Below is a sample letter to the editor that school choice advocates can use to make a powerful argument on behalf of increased educational freedom and parental choice in Michigan.
To the Editor:
School choicegiving parents the freedom to choose the safest and best schools for their childrenis an idea whose time has come for Michigan.
Under the current government assignment system, students are assigned to a government school based on their geographic neighborhood. If that school fails to meet its students' needs, wealthier families can afford to choose a private school for their children, but lower-income parents in the inner citywhere government schools perform most poorlyhave no options.
Greater school choice can help all parents in two ways. First, choice will improve all schools, government or private, by forcing them to treat families as customers rather than as captive audiences. The resulting competition for students will help schools be more accountable to their customers, leading to lower costs and improved quality.
Second, a school choice plan can help lower- and middle-income families afford alternatives to their failing neighborhood government schools by offering vouchers or tax credits to offset the cost of tuition to an alternative government or private school. Michigan currently offers tax credits to families who pay private or public college tuition, but the state constitution prohibits anything similar for K-12 education.
It's time to remove the discriminatory language from our constitution and allow parents of all socioeconomic backgrounds the opportunity to choose schools that best meet their children's unique educational needs.
A School Choice Advocate