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When it comes to education reform, there is a lot of misinformation out there. While it has been shown time and time again that school choice is a win-win situation for everyone involved, there are those who continue to argue against it. Perhaps a little empirical evidence will change some minds. Today, the Friedman Foundation for Educational Choice released a report which provided just that in A Win-Win Solution: The Empirical Evidence on School Choice.
The report examined five topics: academic outcomes of choice participants, academic outcomes of public schools, fiscal impact on taxpayers, racial segregation in schools, and civic values and practices. The Friedman Foundation said “The empirical evidence consistently shows that choice improves academic outcomes for participants and public schools, saves taxpayer money, moves students into more integrated classrooms, and strengthens the shared civic values and practices essential to American democracy.”
The vast majority of the studies examined showed that school choice is beneficial in all five areas. Eleven of the twelve studies examined showed that choice improves academic outcomes, twenty-two of twenty-three show that choice improves academic outcomes in public schools as well. Every study examined shows that school choice has no negative financial impact on taxpayers, and that it decreases racial segregation. None of the studies showed that school choice has a negative impact on civic values and practices.
What can we learn from this intensive study on school choice?
"Despite decades of carping by skeptics, vouchers and school choice in any form are a win-win for children--whether they attend private school or remain in a public school affected by school choice," said Robert Enlow, president and CEO of the Friedman Foundation for Educational Choice. "Competition works in all segments of our society, and it certainly helps children when they're permitted to attend a school that fits their needs."
With such clear evidence on the benefits of school choice, one has to wonder how long detractors will be able to keep up their fight.