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Archive for January 25th, 2023

Since I’ve repeatedly written (and spoken) about the momentum for school choice, I’m naturally a big fan of this video from John Stossel.

It’s not just libertarian-oriented people who recognize that school choice is gaining ground across the country.

The union bosses at the National Education Association have bitterly complained that their under-performing monopoly is being threatened as parents get more options.

Given the malignant role of teacher unions (especially with regards to disadvantaged students), that definitely warms my heart.

Now we have more good news to share – assuming you are a good person who puts the interests of kids above those of union bosses (unlike someone who happens to reside at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue).

After getting comprehensive statewide school choice in West Virginia in 2021 and Arizona in 2022, the Hawkeye State has now enacted its own version.

Here are some of the details of this remarkable development from Iowa, as reported by Jeremiah Poff for the Washington Examiner.

Gov. Kim Reynolds (R-IA) signed new legislation Tuesday…to establish a universal school choice program. Hours after the state legislature approved the Students First Act to establish a statewide education savings account program for all K-12 students , Reynolds, surrounded by children, triumphantly affixed her signature to the legislation… The new program will provide students with more than $7,000 in annual funds through an education savings account that can be used to cover all sorts of education-related expenses, including private school tuition and private tutoring. …Reynolds said in a statement after the legislature approved the bill. “Parents, not the government, can now choose the education setting best suited to their child regardless of their income or zip code. With this bill, Iowa has affirmed that educational freedom belongs to all, not just those who can afford it.”

This is good news. It means better results for students at lower cost for taxpayers.

By the way, here’s another excerpt that is worth sharing.

The Governor not only is a supporter of school choice, she took the very unusual step of going after Republican state legislators who were siding with union bosses rather than families.

Reynolds, a Republican, had sought to enact a school choice program in the state’s previous legislative session but encountered opposition from members of her own party that doomed the bill. She later took the unusual step of endorsing primary opponents for several of her party’s own incumbents who opposed school choice.

She didn’t just endorse primary opponents.

Many of those candidates actually defeated incumbent Republicans who opposed choice.

And that’s been happening in other states as well, which arguably can be considered the best political news of 2022.

I’ll close with an upbeat prediction that Iowa won’t be the only state to adopt comprehensive school choice this year. So I fully expect big, positive changes in next year’s version of this map.

And I’ll also predict the list of school choice hypocrites will expand.

P.S. Depending on how you rank the importance of different issues, what’s been happening with school choice may be only the second-most important development at the state level in recent years.

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