Does choice make a difference?

One of the big claims about charter schools is that they give parents a choice in where to educate their child. No longer are neighborhood public schools the only option for students.
However, there have always been choices.

Parents can choose to send their children to private schools.
Parents can choose to send their children to faith-based schools.
Parents can choose to send their children to Montessori schools.
Parents can choose to send their children to magnet schools.
Parents can choose to homeschool their children.
Parents can choose to unschool their children.
Parents can choose to send their children to virtual schools.
And yes, parents can always choose to send their children to public schools.

The choices are already out there and available. Granted, some of those schools have tuition and some are not possible for working parents. But, the choices are available and if families wanted a certain option, they would make it happen.
Vouchers and charter schools are not going to change the field of education. The changes need to come from within the walls of the school in how instruction is taught, how learning days are structured, and in establishing high standards for our students.

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