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  • A First Step in Congress for School Choice in D.C

    Earlier today, the Scholarships for Opportunity and Results (SOAR) Act, a bill sponsored by Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) to reauthorize the D.C. Opportunity Scholarship Program, passed out of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee and is now on its way to consideration in the House. The bill passed by a margin of 21 to 14. Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA), chairman of the OGR committee, issued the following statement:

    Today’s vote continues the bipartisan momentum to restore educational choice and opportunity for schoolchildren in the District of Columbia. Independent studies and reports from parents and students have validated the educational benefits the D.C. Opportunity Scholarship Program has provided to low-income D.C. students. Without the robust and steadfast opposition of teachers’ union special interest groups, I believe there would have been consensus of support for this commonsense proposal.

    Issa’s Oversight and Government Reform Committee has also produced a powerful video about the D.C. OSP.

    Brian Bolduc over at NRO describes the opposition to the D.C. voucher program:

    Nonetheless, opposition was fierce. In 2009, Sen. Dick Durbin (D., Ill.) slipped language into an omnibus spending bill to let the program expire. Current enrollees would receive vouchers until graduation, but no additional pupils could apply. Durbin shivered at the thought of unregulated schools. Students were attending ‘schools where somebody’s mom or somebody’s wife declared themselves [principals] and teachers and went in to teach without college degrees and received federal subsidies to do it,’ he told the Washington Times.

    While it may make Senator Durbin uneasy, the D.C. OSP puts parents in the driver’s seat. And when families have a choice in their education, educational achievement and attainment improves. In fact, students in the D.C. Opportunity Scholarship Program are outperforming their D.C. Public School peers in reading achievement, and have made statistically significant gains in academic attainment. Students who received vouchers and used them to attend private school had a 91 percent graduation rate, according to federally-mandated evaluations.

    The D.C. Opportunity Scholarship Program has been a lifeline for low-income children living in the nation’s capitol. The $7,500 scholarships have insured they have access to quality schools in the District, and are no longer relegated to often underperforming and unsafe D.C. Public Schools.

    To learn more about the D.C. Opportunity Scholarship Program, visit www.VoicesOfSchoolChoice.org

    Posted in Education [slideshow_deploy]

    4 Responses to A First Step in Congress for School Choice in D.C

    1. Ron Rowan, Westminst says:

      Gee, I wonder why the opposition hasn't left any comments here? Could it be that they're dumbfounded when conservatives do something that really works?

    2. Madeleine, Illinois says:

      I htink it's a good idea, in all honesty when my kids were young I gave the school my uncles address so they could go to a beter school too. I know what it is to watch kids fail because they live two blocks out of a district where all the good schools are. It doesn't matter what color you are, everyone is entitled to choose the best choice for their children. I'm white and my kids were getting a rotten eduction, finally I moved into that disttrict and they just continued going to that school. I'm wondering though, now the college grants have been cut in half, is it because of that voucher program? My son is now left just about to go for his masters degree and he can't because they cut all of the grants in half, he would have to come up with almost 3,800 dollars to contiue on every semester although its not a total waste, he did get a college degree it is still not what he needed to continue in Library science an we dont' know why they did that, they left some young people hanging in their 3rd year of college with out the funds to continue, that is really unfair. No higher education? why not? Every single college out there is full of muslim chilldren, how are they affording that, my husbnds old alma mater which was expensive even back in the day, now is not accessable to most people yet the muslims get off a plane by the load and they are enrolled in Wesleyan the following year. How is this done? some of them are poor and the rest, who knows. I think they ought to get their priorities straignt, Seniors and young people are not the way to save a buck, immigration is. I guess their nose is in the way, they just can't see that.

    3. Leon Lundquist, Dura says:

      I wish the fact Democrats oppose Students and USE Teachers for "Social Justice" (that is Communism) was exposed. The Captive Media won't touch it. None of the deserved blame goes against the Demo-crats, and undeserved blame to the Republicans. I think it is a startling fact, the most telling thing about Demo-crats they oppose every good American Value and every good American thing.

      Democrats were usurped by the Progressive Socialists (really Communists) and the serve the Foreign Interest exclusively. They have dumbed down the Students they were trusted to teach! I would rather have Moms and Dads handle the Classrooms than the dupes we have in the Public Schools! And Head Start is taking away what the little kids really need most of all! Time with Mom and Dad.

    4. Phyllis Murphy says:

      I would not allow my Grandchildren to attend public school. They all started their young years in Christian schools. They do not have negative or liberal ideas, due to the fact they were never introduced to immoral textbooks, or liberal Marxist teachers. They were taugh love of Country, acceptance of your behavior ( no blaming everyone else) value system. The schooling for three was approximately$10,000.00 a year. Compare that to our local federal system @16,000.00 per student.They have mostly been awarded scholarships (academic). Thank you Christian school for producing God fearing, American loving youth.

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