Tuesday, February 08, 2022

School choice advocates praise Gov. Stitt's education reform goals

Following Governor Kevin Stitt's State of the State address yesterday, school choice advocates issued statements praising the Governor's position on education reform. Read them below:

American Federation for Children - Oklahoma Praises Governor Kevin Stitt for Emphasizing School Choice in State of the State Address

OKLAHOMA CITY – American Federation for Children – Oklahoma (AFC-Oklahoma) today praised Governor Kevin Stitt for making education, and specifically school choice, a focal point of his annual State of the State Address. In the speech, Gov. Stitt pledged “to support any legislation that gives parents more school choice” and endorsed Senate Bill 1647, the Oklahoma Empowerment Act. SB 1647 allows parents to use a portion of their state education tax dollars to offset expenses for private school tuition or approved homeschooling costs.

“All parents should be allowed to select the school and educational experience that best serves their child,” said AFC-Oklahoma Senior Advisor Jennifer Carter. “Our current system leaves too many working families stuck in failing schools, perpetuating a cycle of poverty and inequality. SB 1647 will help break that cycle by giving parents the means to pursue other options if their local school is not a good fit for their children.”

Carter also said the governor made it clear that parent voices should be respected and honored when the state fashions education policies.

“Our thanks go out to Governor Stitt for making it clear that parents – not unions or bureaucrats – are the people we need to be listening to when it comes to educating our kids. The Legislature should follow the governor’s lead and ensure they are prioritizing parents and students over systems and institutions.”

About AFC-Oklahoma
The American Federation for Children-Oklahoma seeks to empower families, especially lower-income families, with the freedom to choose the best K-12 education for their children. We are a project of the American Federation for Children (AFC). For more information, visit https://www.afcoklahoma.org/.

School Choice Supporters Thank Gov. Stitt for Education Focus

 OKLAHOMA CITY – ChoiceMatters, an Oklahoma program dedicated to increasing education options for parents, today praised Gov. Kevin Stitt for emphasizing education and parent empowerment in his annual State of the State Address. In his remarks today, Gov. Stitt promised to “support any legislation that gives parents more school choice” and championed a bill (SB 1647) that would allow parents to use a portion of their state education tax dollars to offset expenses for private school tuition or homeschooling.

“Every child is different, and every parent should have the ability to honor those differences by finding a school that best fits their needs,” said ChoiceMatters Executive Director Robert Ruiz. “Too often, our public school system embraces a one-size-fits-all system that elevates bureaucrats and unions over the individual needs of parents and students. Gov. Stitt should get a lot of credit for taking on that system on and working to put parents back in charge.”

Ruiz said the parents that ChoiceMatters works with are particularly excited by the governor’s support of SB 1647, the Oklahoma Empowerment Act. 

“’Empowerment Accounts,’ will put parents back in charge of their children’s education and ensure they have the ability to make meaningful choices when it comes to schools,” said Ruiz. “This is about ensuring that no family is trapped in a failing school and every student finds a school that best fits their needs.”  

OCPA applauds Stitt agenda

OKLAHOMA CITY (February 7, 2022)— Larry Parman, chairman of the board of trustees for the Oklahoma Council of Public Affairs, issued the following statement today in response to Gov. Kevin Stitt’s “State of the State” address, which included Stitt’s endorsement of Oklahoma Empowerment Accounts (OEAs) that will fund students, not buildings, and allow parents to choose any education option that best serves their child’s needs.

“Today Governor Stitt outlined an agenda for the upcoming legislative session that included his enthusiastic support of Oklahoma Empowerment Accounts. OEAs will provide greater power and autonomy to parents by allowing money to follow the student to any setting that best serves that child, including private schools.  Passage of the OEA law would make Oklahoma a national leader in educational opportunity and—ultimately—improved academic outcomes.

“Senate President Pro Tempore Greg Treat has shown tremendous leadership by filing Senate Bill 1647, and now Governor Stitt has made clear that passing this bill is a key component of making Oklahoma a Top Ten state. I encourage all lawmakers to join the Governor and Pro Tempore in supporting this crucial legislation. It’s time to put parents in charge of education, and place students first in policymaking.”

The Oklahoma Council of Public Affairs is a free-market think tank that works to advance principles and policies that support free enterprise, limited government, individual initiative and personal responsibility.


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