Held every January, National School Choice Week shines a positive light on all education options for children. National School Choice Week is the world’s largest celebration of opportunity in education. The goal of National School Choice Week each year is to raise awareness about the K-12 education options available to children and families, while putting a spotlight on the benefits of school choice. All types of school choice options are celebrated, including public schools, charter schools, magnet schools, private schools, online schools, as well as homeschooling. National School Choice Week is a nonpartisan, nonpolitical public awareness effort.
Did you know?
- One student drops out of an American Public School every 26 seconds?
- America is lagging behind more than a dozen nations in math and literacy.
- In many of our nation’s largest cities, dropout rates are over 50%
Spotlight on School Choice:
- 43 states plus the District of Columbia allow Public Charter Schools. The number of students in Charter Schools have quadrupled in the last ten years.
- There are 3,200 Magnet Schools across the country that serve 2.6 million children. Plus Magnet programs exist in traditional Public Schools across the country in all 50 states and the District of Columbia.
- 27 states and the District of Columbia offer Private School choice initiatives. Scholarship programs serve 362,000 and an additional 872,000 families are assisted by deduction programs.
- Student’s in 41 states and the District of Columbia attend full-time, statewide, tuition-free virtual/online academies. That’s more than 320,000 students. An additional 2.3 million students take online courses while attending traditional public schools.
Sources: Evergreen Education Group; Friedman Foundation for Educational Choice; Magnet Schools of America and National Center for Education; National Alliance for Public Charter Schools; U.S. Department of Education; Institute of Education Sciences, National Center for Education Statistics
About PA Cyber:
PA Cyber supports National School Choice Week. As a premier online K-12 educational provider, The Pennsylvania Cyber Charter School (PA Cyber) offers students and families a chance to build their very own school…out of choices, not bricks. Using advanced technology that we provide, our students enjoy a customized education that is second to none.
PA Cyber combines highly qualified teachers and intensely personalized instruction with a dynamic interactive curriculum that now satisfies, challenges, and engages thousands of students across the state. As a public school, PA Cyber provides services at no cost to Pennsylvania students and families.
We look forward to hearing from you. CLICK HERE to visit our website or call us at 1-888-PA-CYBER (722-9237) for more information.
National School Choice Week – School Choice Definitions
Public School Open Enrollment: Open enrollment policies provide increased education options within traditional public schooling. Open enrollment allows parents to select the best public schools for their children, regardless of where those schools are located. Depending on the state or local open enrollment policy, this means that parents can choose any public school within a district (intra-district school choice), or, in some cases, outside of their home district (inter-district school choice).
Public Charter Schools: Charter schools are independent public schools that are allowed the freedom to be more innovative, while being held strictly accountable for improving student achievement. Charter schools are always public schools and are always tuition-free. These schools are created (chartered) in different ways, depending on state law. Some are opened by school districts, while other states allow mayors, universities, and nonprofit groups to create charter schools. These schools are open to all children – students are selected at random.
Magnet Schools: Magnet schools are public schools that are operated by school districts or groups of school districts. Magnet schools are tuitionfree and have a focused theme and aligned curriculum such as Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM), Fine and Performing Arts, or International Baccalaureate.
Private School Choice: Private school choice programs are created by individual states to give parents greater access to private schools for their children. Some private school choice policies are relatively universal (allowing all children to participate), while others are targeted to assist low- and middle-income families, children who would otherwise attend failing public schools, or children with special learning needs.
Private school choice programs can take several different forms, including:
- Opportunity scholarship programs, also called school voucher programs, which allow parents to use all or part of the tax funding set aside for their children’s education to send their children to private schools.
- Education savings accounts, which allow parents to access the state and/or local funds set aside for their children’s education for a variety of educational purposes, including private school tuition.
- Tax credit scholarship programs, which allow individuals or corporations to receive tax credits for donating to nonprofit scholarship organizations that offer tuition assistance.
- Personal tax credits and deductions, which allow parents who send their children to private school to receive a state income tax credit, or a deduction, for private school tuition as well as books, supplies, computers, tutors or transportation.
Virtual Schools and Online Learning: Virtual schools are Internet-based academies that teach students entirely or primarily through a rigorous online curriculum. These schools can be state-operated, district-run public schools, public charter schools, magnet schools, or privately operated schools. In some cases, online learning is combined with traditional, in-classroom education, called “blended learning.” Publicly operated virtual schools hold children to the same academic standards and requirements as traditional public schools.
Homeschooling: Homeschooling is the process of parents educating children in the home. This method of education is becoming increasingly popular in the United States, with many homeschooling families participating in local or regional homeschooling groups to augment in-home learning. All states permit homeschooling, and many states require standardized test scores, curriculum approval, and professional evaluation of students
Source: NationalSchoolChoiceWeek.com https://schoolchoiceweek.com/