School Choice Week 2013 in Oklahoma and across America

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Every January, supporters of expanded educational options for America's school children and their parents put on School Choice Week, events across America to call attention to and advocate for school choice. Nationally, there's a whistle-stop tour, beginning tomorrow in Los Angeles and ending eight days later in New York, with special events along the way in Albuquerque, Topeka, Kansas City, Chicago, Milwaukee, South Bend, Toledo, Cleveland, Erie, Buffalo, Rochester, and Albany.

The goal of this tour -- along with the record-breaking 3,000 events being independently planned for National School Choice Week 2013 -- is to demonstrate overwhelming support, and demand, for school choice...while shining a positive spotlight on the hundreds of organizations, thousands of schools, and millions of Americans working every day to increase access to great schools in our country.

The National School Choice Week Special -- a historic railcar -- will depart Los Angeles Union Station on January 25, 2013 and arrive in New York on February 2, 2013. Parents, students, community leaders, education organizations and elected officials of both parties will host 14 very special events along the tour's route.

The Special will link the modern-day fight for educational equality to important movements that have shaped the American way of life -- from suffrage to civil rights -- all of which used similar whistle-stop tours to generate overwhelming support for causes that changed our history for the better.

With bold strokes, our generation can -- and will -- make its mark on the tapestry of our national experience. Social change isn't just something we read about in history books. It's something we can make a reality, and in the process, secure for ourselves not only a place in history books yet unwritten, but secure for our country a brighter and more prosperous future where no child is denied the opportunity to attend the best schools possible.

The School Choice Week train won't pass through Oklahoma, but several local events are planned:

On Monday, January 28, 2013, at 8:30 a.m., Trinity School in Oklahoma City will host a celebration of school choice. Trinity is a non-denominational Christian school with Episcopalian roots which describes itself as "the 'I can' school where bright students who learn differently can succeed."

On Thursday, January 31, 2013, at 4:00 p.m., Sunnybrook Christian School in Stillwater will hold a balloon launch for school choice.

On Friday, February 1, 2013, at 11 a.m., Oklahoma Virtual Charter Academy is holding a virtual rally for school choice. To participate, download, print, and fill out a placard, completing the sentence, "I support school choice because...," take a photo with the placard, and upload it to the OVCA Facebook page.

If you'd like to organize a School Choice Week event, you can find out how to do it here. You can follow School Choice Week events on Twitter through the #scw hashtag.

MORE: To learn more about the progress of school choice in Oklahoma, visit the Choice Remarks blog and the website for OCPA's Center for Educational Freedom.

RELATED: A story from the Religious News Service notes that parents from a wide variety of faiths have found virtual charter schools to be a good fit, providing a safe learning environment, time to include their own faith and values in the school day, and flexibility to incorporate a wide variety of extracurricular activities. The story also mentions that virtual charters can meet the needs of students who struggle in the traditional classroom environment and students who want to devote significant time to pursuits like the arts, music, and athletics.

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1 Comments

David Van Author Profile Page said:

I have family on Minnesota (a state with guaranteed public school choice, statewide). While it does provide much better results for the student and family, we must be prepared to accept the impact it has on communities.
It quickly results in some school districts becoming regional super powers in various sports and other electives. Other schools may drop programs altogether because they've ceased to garner enough interest in trying to compete with the fewer superpower sports programs in the next town, or next county.
Disadvantaged families (who lack the transportation resources to get their kids back & forth to the more distant schools) will possibly be less-served by shrinking options in their home town.
I'm not against the greater choices. I want to go even further and echo George H.W. Bush's "G.I. Bill For Kids". He proposed a federal funding mechanism that allowed federal tuition payments to any academic institution ofthe family's choosing - private or public - secular or religious.
But I am sober-minded about the complaints that will ensue. Many of the complaints will have significant merit.

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This page contains a single entry by Michael Bates published on January 24, 2013 7:27 PM.

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