Every year, the grass-roots celebration of families’ educational options continues to grow. This year, National School Choice Week (January 24-30) featured more than 16,000 events in all 50 states. The Mackinac Center did not sponsor a big bash this year, but did seize the opportunity to tout existing options and to press the case for more.
You may not have heard about our new website ChoosingCharters.com on TV or radio, but email and social media advertising attracted thousands of visitors during the big week. The site is an antidote to the misleading attacks Michigan charter schools still face.
At Choosing Charters, visitors can learn some overlooked facts and watch real families tell their satisfied stories about finding better learning environments for their children. They also can learn about top-performing charters such as Star International Academy, where 100 percent of the students graduate and go on to college.
Charters certainly were not the only option featured during School Choice Week. On January 24, the Lansing State Journal published an op-ed by Macomb Township’s Liz Roe, a friend of the Mackinac Center. Liz told how her two daughters with special learning needs have excelled in a private school setting, and called on the state to help families who lack the means to exercise the same choice.
I also used the platform provided by The Detroit News to show how Florida points to a brighter future for Detroit students. The Sunshine State’s celebration of a popular and successful scholarship program, headlined by Martin Luther King III, contrasts with the Motor City’s recent sickouts and deplorable building conditions.
Michigan had plenty to celebrate during School Choice Week, but the need for more learning options remains great.