Millennials Prefer Private Schools Yet Vote Against School Choice

Here is Ashley Bateman writing at The Federalist about school choice:

More than 7 in 10 millennial parents support the ability of parents to control their child’s education spending. But they keep voting for politicians who refuse to give parents that power.

The first Republican president to be elected during the age of millennial voters has met widespread outcry from this demographic, yet a freer market is exactly what millennials claim they want in education.

The Center for Information and Research on Civic Learning and Engagement found that 55 percent of 18-29 year olds voted Democrat in 2016. Their vote share for Donald Trump was one of the lowest a Republican candidate has received from younger voters since the 1970s, and 8 percent of voters aged 18-29 voted for a third-party candidate.

Yet millennials’ voting records do not match their education polling results. A national poll recently published by EdChoice found that when asked what school they would select to obtain the best education for their child, a plurality of 43 percent of millennials would choose a private school, versus 28 percent who would choose a regular public school. The choice to homeschool was the next most popular, garnering 13 percent of respondents’ votes. Eight percent of millennials put a charter school as their first choice.

A breakout poll from the Schooling in America survey project found millennials rated their local private schools higher than local public schools. Seventy-four percent of those surveyed gave an A or B rating to their local private or parochial school versus 41 percent giving a similar rating to local public schools.

“Parents have a variety of reasons for preferring and choosing private schools,” said Joe McTighe, executive director of the Council on American Private Education. “Religious and independent schools offer an education that… challenges the child, fits the child’s learning style, instills a love of learning, develops moral character and a religious worldview, prepares the child for college and career, educates the whole child, provides individual attention.”

Read more: The Federalist

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