Poll: School Choice a Winning Issue
by Maggie McKneely • February 11, 2020
Parents are generally best suited for determining what their children need, and more than ever American parents are saying their kids need alternatives to traditional state-run schools and a one-size-fits-all approach to education.
According to a new poll released by the American Federation for Children, this desire for flexible, custom education alternatives is being expressed by people who represent a wide range of demographics.
Overall, 69% of poll participants support the idea of school choice—that is, legislation providing access to alternatives to traditional public schools, such as private schools, charter schools, and homeschooling. This is up from 63% in 2018.
This trend comes as no surprise to us. In our 35 years of advocacy, Home School Legal Defense Association has seen homeschooling in the United States grow to a current population of about 2 million students. We’ve witnessed the movement becoming more varied—our own members hail from nearly every walk of life (and many countries).
The new poll numbers attest to this change, showing that a diverse coalition of Americans of all ages, races, and political ideologies support school choice.
Of the age groups polled, Millennials and Gen Z were the most supportive, with 71% saying they favored greater school choice, perhaps evidence that non-public school options are becoming more mainstream and accepted than they were in past generations. Gen X, Baby Boomers, and the Silent Generation all polled well over 60%.
Nearly 82% of Latinos said that they support school choice, a jump of nearly 10 points from last year’s poll; 68% of African Americans said that they have a positive view of educational alternatives.
And in an age when nearly every political issue is partisan, school choice appears to be the exception. Regarding political affiliation, 84% of Republicans and 69% of independents support increasing alternatives. While a smaller percentage (57%) of Democrats support school choice, the number is still a clear majority.
More and more families are turning away from traditional public schools in favor of educational systems that are a better fit for their children. For those families that are considering or have chosen homeschooling, no matter who they are, HSLDA has a wealth of resources and legal experts ready to help. We’re here to help make homeschooling possible for all families!