Press Releases

 

Entries in Alliance For School Choice (4)

Sunday
Jan192014

Alliance For School Choice - New PSA Features Athletes, Celebrities Calling for More Educational Options

Includes Deion Sanders, Kathie Lee Gifford, Lou Gossett, Jr., Vivica Fox, Jalen Rose, Lisa Leslie and others

PSA to be unveiled Jan. 30 during Super Bowl celebration in New York City

Washington, D.C. (Jan. 17, 2014) – The Alliance for School Choice and the American Federation for Children, today announced it is releasing a new PSA featuring athletes and celebrities calling for more educational options. The PSA will be publicly unveiled at a press conference during Super Bowl celebrations on Jan. 30, 2014 in New York City. 

“This PSA will serve as an urgent reminder that too many children are falling through cracks, only to be forgotten and left behind,” said Kevin P. Chavous, executive counsel to  Federation and the Alliance. “We’re grateful to have a diverse group of athletes and celebrities coming together to urge for more educational options, and serving as champions for children and families in need.”

The Jan. 30 press conference will feature Pro Football Hall of Famer Deion Sanders, four-time Olympic gold medalist Lisa Leslie, and Chavous, a national education reform advocate and former D.C. City Councilmember. 

The PSA features Sanders, Leslie, Kathie Lee Gifford, Jalen Rose, Lou Gossett, Jr., Vivica Fox, Stephen A. Smith, Keshia Knight Pulliam, “Mary Mary,” Janet Evans, Theotis Beasley and Mary Millben.

Friday
Feb012013

Alliance for School Choice Unveils School Choice Yearbook 2012-13

Almost A Quarter-Million Students Enrolled in Private School Choice Programs This Year, According to New School Choice Yearbook

Single-year private school choice program enrollment growth is largest in American history

WASHINGTON, D.C. (February 1, 2013)—More than 245,000 children are participating in publicly funded private school choice programs across the nation, according to the School Choice Yearbook 2012-13—the annual award-winning publication offering the most comprehensive data on the nation’s 32 private school choice programs—released today by the Alliance for School Choice.

Download the Yearbook at www.AllianceforSchoolChoice.org/Yearbook.

Among this year’s landmark findings:

  • A total of 245,854 students are enrolled in private school choice programs in the United States, an increase of more than 35,000 students from a year ago. It represents the largest single-year increase in private school choice program enrollment in American history.
  • Five new programs were enacted last year, and a remarkable bipartisan expansion of the New Orleans voucher program has now made the scholarship program available to children all across Louisiana.
  • Eleven of the 32 private school choice programs are specifically tailored to serve children with special needs, benefiting more than 30,000 students nationwide.
  • Nearly all of the children participating in America’s private school choice programs come from low- or middle-income families or are students with special needs.
  • Florida is home to the most students benefiting from private school choice, with more than 76,000 students participants in the state’s two existing programs. Two states—Ohio and Arizona—have four school choice programs each.

Following a year that saw educational choice expansions that included continued growth of public charter schools, public school choice, and expansions of options like education savings accounts and virtual schools, the Yearbook chronicles how much of the education reform successes in 2012 were made possible as a result of private school choice gains.

“This year’s remarkable growth for educational choice in all its forms is a testament to the hard work of tireless advocates all across the country,” said Yearbook coauthor Malcom Glenn, the national director of communications at the Alliance. “The gains of 2012 give us great momentum towards helping even more kids in the year ahead.”

The Alliance’s annual Yearbook, entitled School Choice Now: The Power of Educational Choice, is a collection of the nation’s most accurate data on private school choice programs across the country. The 2012-13 edition, which was coauthored by Alliance Director of External Affairs Randan Swindler, contains an analysis of educational choice trends and information, a directory of the accountability provisions and requirements for each of the nation’s 32 private school choice programs, and a chronicle of the past year’s events.

“It’s fitting that we’re releasing our Yearbook during National School Choice Week, when people all across the country are celebrating giving parents quality options,” said Kevin P. Chavous, executive counsel to the Alliance. “Now is the time for people to recognize how more lives than ever are changing as a result of educational choice.”

The Alliance for School Choice is a leading national organization promoting educational choice. For more information, or to download the Yearbook, visit www.AllianceForSchoolChoice.org.

This release is available to read online here.

www.AllianceforSchoolChoice.org

Wednesday
Aug012012

Alliance for School Choice Establishes Legal Defense Fund For Louisiana Private Schools Accepting Scholarship Students

Fund will defend schools against threatening bullying tactics from Louisiana Association of Educators

BATON ROUGE, LA (July 31, 2012)—The Alliance for School Choice and the Institute for Justice today announced the creation of the Louisiana Defense Fund in response to a letter last week from the Louisiana Association of Educators (LAE) that threatened to sue private schools that participate in the state’s newly expanded school choice program.

The Alliance—the leading national organization promoting and implementing school choice programs nationwide—was joined by the Institute for Justice (IJ)—the nation’s leading legal advocates for school choice—in announcing the creation of the defense fund to protect Louisiana schools against legal threats from the local teachers union.

Rather than work to improve failing and underperforming schools across the state, earlier this month, the Louisiana Association of Educators sent letters threatening to sue private schools that accept public school students using government scholarships under Act 2, Governor Bobby Jindal’s innovative effort to improve elementary and secondary education in Louisiana by giving parents more choices in educating their children.

In letters sent on or around July 25, 2012, to private schools across state, the LAE asserted that if private schools accept students using scholarships provided by Act 2, the LAE “will have no alternative other than to institute litigation” against each school. The letters state that the LAE will “take whatever means necessary” to prevent the private schools from accepting students using the scholarship funds.

In response to the unprecedented tactic from the teachers union, the Alliance hired Barry W. Ashe of the New Orleans-based law firm Stone Pigman Walther Wittmann, LLC, to defend the school choice program's implementation. In a letter to participating schools today, the Alliance made clear that the LAE has no legal claim against the private schools, and if the union tries to bring a claim, the costs necessary to defend the litigation will be paid out of the defense fund.

Kevin P. Chavous, a senior advisor to the Alliance, said that the establishment of the defense fund is a message to schools across the state that reformers will stand up in the face of intimidation tactics from special interests.

“We’re not only standing with the schools of Louisiana,” Chavous said, “but most importantly, we’re standing with the thousands of parents all across the state who deserve the opportunity to choose the best educational environment for their children.”

“The unions and their allies have been losing in court and are now resorting to threats in a transparent attempt to minimize the exodus from failing schools they no doubt see coming. The bottom line here is that the unions’ threats are groundless,” said Institute for Justice Attorney Bill Maurer. “And the fund means private schools can stay the course, welcome in children from across the state, and give them the kind of high-quality education the union-dominated educational establishment has proven itself incapable of delivering up until now without having to worry about the cost of defending themselves from a frivolous suit.”

“Organizations that continue to bring baseless challenges against this program's implementation should be ashamed of themselves,” said Eddie Rispone, chairman of the Louisiana Federation for Children, a partner organization of the Alliance for School Choice. “In the end, we’re confident that the kids and their families will prevail.”

The Department of Education announced the extension of 5,637 scholarship offers to students to participate in the program this fall—just a portion of the 10,300 applications the Department received—illustrating that attempts to stop schools from participating in the program are at odds with extremely strong demand from parents.

The trial to determine the constitutionality of the program is set to begin on October 15 in Baton Rouge.

This release is available to read online here.

www.allianceforschoolchoice.org

Friday
Jan272012

Alliance For School Choice - News: Record Number of Children Enrolled in Private School Choice Programs this Year

New School Choice Yearbook Reveals

Washington, D.C. (January 26, 2012)—More than 210,000 children are participating in publicly funded private school choice programs across the nation, according to the School Choice Yearbook 2011-12—the annual award-winning publication offering the most comprehensive data on the nation’s 27 private school choice programs—released today by the Alliance for School Choice.

Download the Yearbook at www.YearofSchoolChoice.com.

Among the groundbreaking findings:

  • More than 210,000 students are enrolled in school choice programs in the United States, a growth of nearly 25 percent since 2007.
  • Seven new programs were enacted last year, including a new program in Indiana that boasted the highest first-year enrollment ever for a voucher plan. Of the new programs, there are four voucher programs, one scholarship tax credit program, one individual tuition tax credit, and one education savings account program—a new program that lets parents use education dollars on a variety of educational tools.
  • Ten of the 27 school choice programs are specifically tailored to serve children with special needs, benefiting almost 30,000 students nationwide.
  • Nearly all of the children participating in America’s school choice programs come from low- or middle-income families or are students with special needs.
  • Florida is home to the greatest number of students who benefit from school choice, with 65,000 students participants in the state’s two existing programs. Two states—Ohio and Arizona—have four school choice programs each.

In step with what The Wall Street Journal has dubbed as “The Year of School Choice,” the Yearbook chronicles not only the new programs, but how significant expansions everywhere from Wisconsin to Georgia to Washington, D.C. made 2011 such a breakthrough year.

“It was unquestionably a remarkable year in the fight to give educational opportunities to low-income families,” said Yearbook coauthor Malcom Glenn, the national director of communications at the Alliance. “The gains of 2011 give us great momentum towards helping even more kids in the year ahead.”

The Alliance’s annual Yearbook, entitled School Choice Now: The Year of School Choice, is a collection of the nation’s most accurate data on private school choice programs across the country.  The 2011-12 edition, which was coauthored by Alliance Communications Manager Michelle Gininger, contains an analysis of trends and information regarding school choice, a directory of the accountability provisions and requirements for each of the 27 private school choice programs, and a chronicle of the events from the past year.

“The data collected in our yearbook shows that 2011 truly is the year of school choice,” said Betsy DeVos, chairman of the Alliance for School Choice.  “With seven new programs, 11 expanded programs, and nearly 20,000 more students participating than last year, we can see these programs changing the lives of children across America.”

The Alliance for School Choice is a leading national organization promoting school choice. For more information, or to download the Yearbook, visit www.AllianceForSchoolChoice.org.

This release is available to read online here.

www.allianceforschoolchoice.org