Large majority of Hispanic parents support school choice policies

As we celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month and students across the nation get into the groove of a new school year, it is a great opportunity to learn more about how Hispanic parents feel about different aspects of K-12 education. Last week, we covered how Hispanic parents feel about the direction of K-12 education nationally, state-wide, and locally. This week, we explore the data to better understand Hispanic Parents’ views on educational choice policies.

EdChoice and Morning Consult have obtained monthly survey responses from Hispanic parents over the past four years. We know they are very favorable of school choice policies. Educational choice policies like charter schools, vouchers, and education savings accounts (ESAs) garner support from more than two-thirds of Hispanic parents, based on nearly 30 nationally representative surveys conducted since September 2020.

Examining data from September 2020 to August 2023, support from Hispanic parents towards each of the choice policies has been very strong. ESAs are the most popular of the choice policies, and that held true with Hispanic parents. Support has grown for both charter schools and ESAs since 2020. Voucher support has decreased from 2020, albeit slightly.

Opposition towards these policies, as you might imagine, is quite low. Additionally, opposition from Hispanic parents towards the policies has decreased since 2020. On average from September 2020-2023, roughly 20 percent of Hispanic parents oppose vouchers. Opposition towards charter schools is slightly lower, around 17 percent on average from August 2021-2023. ESA opposition in the same time period is around 10 percent of Hispanic parents. The data are abundantly clear, Hispanic parents are big fans of choice in K-12 education.

One note to keep an eye on, though, is the effect of information on choice policies. In our surveys, respondents are asked their opinion on choice policies with and without a definition of each. Support typically increases when a definition of the policy is provided. This is the case for Hispanic parents too. It is also worth noting that support for each type of policy without a description was above 50 percent and still generally 3 times the proportion of those opposed. On average, Hispanic parents’ support increased significantly for charter schools (+10), vouchers (+16), and ESAs (+16) when given a description. We have found that information about choice programs has large effects and influence on the support for educational choice policies.