NC Voters Support School Choice
Special Report - September 20, 2012
The majority of registered voters in a recent survey say North Carolina’s education system is on the wrong track, and if they had the choice, most would choose to send their children to non-public schools. The “North Carolina K-12 and School Choice Survey,” which surveyed 601 voters in North Carolina, was commissioned by The Friedman Foundation for Educational Choice and the Civitas Institute, and released on September 10.
The Friedman/Civitas survey found that 55 percent of voters said they believe “things in North Carolina’s K-12 education system…have generally gotten off on the wrong track,” while 29 percent said the system is “generally going in the right direction.” Additionally, 52 percent of voters would rate North Carolina’s public school system as fair/poor, while 45 percent would rate it as good/excellent.
The report notes that even though 87 percent of students in North Carolina currently attend traditional public schools, there is “a disconnect between where North Carolina children currently go to school and where voters would like to send their kids if given the choices.” When voters were asked to choose the type of school they would pick if they could, the majority, or 39 percent picked private school, 34 percent picked regular public school, 15 percent charter school, and 11 percent home school.
“These results tell us what we’ve long thought: North Carolinians are not happy with the direction of public education. Although there are many good public schools, the high percentage of respondents who said they would choose to go elsewhere is a sentiment that can’t be ignored,” Dr. Robert Luebke, Senior Policy Analyst with the Civitas Institute, said in a press release. “It’s time to empower parents, expand educational opportunity, and bring true reform to our current system.”
Other interesting findings from the Friedman/Civitas survey include:
- 65 percent of voters said they favored charter schools, versus 15 percent who were opposed.
- Over 60 percent of voters favored tax credit scholarships, compared to about 25 percent who opposed.
- Over 50 percent of voters in the survey also favored education savings accounts (52 percent or 56 percent, depending on the question).
- 57 percent of voters in the survey favored a “school voucher system,” while 32 percent were opposed.
"The results of this poll are not surprising," said Bill Brooks, president of the North Carolina Family Policy Council. "Parents always want the best educational opportunities for their children. As governments become more innovative and allow more options for the use of state education funds, parents are quick to take advantage of the programs they believe are best for their child. The end result is going to be better educated children."
NC Supporters Support Charter Schools - July 19, 2012
Moms Support School Vouchers - May 22, 2012
School Choice Lowers Crime - April 5, 2012
Record School Choice Expansion - January 30, 2012
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