Rich people have always been able to practice educational choice: They either pay out of pocket for private schools, or they pay a premium to buy houses in neighborhoods with “good public schools.”
So, what happens to everyone else?
We know for a fact that our current ZIP Code-based public education system has kept low-income kids out of quality schools.
And studies have shown today’s system also continues to contribute to the exacerbation of socioeconomic segregation in neighborhoods and, thus, public schools.
Educational choice, on the other hand, is designed to help ALL children, regardless of their income or neighborhood.
Even in states where school choice programs are open to families of all incomes, the programs primarily help low- and middle-income families.
We should never presume to know every family’s unique circumstances or hardships, and neither should our country’s education policies.
In all its forms, school choice gives low-income families more opportunities to access schooling options they might never have been able to access before—options that were formerly only open to the wealthy.
And after all, wasn’t our great nation founded on the principles of liberty and equality—not just opportunity for those who can afford it?