Choice Fans Include Teachers Group

National School Choice Week continues to grow. And so do the ongoing efforts in states to expand the educational opportunities available for young people.

The Heartland Institute reports:

Twenty-nine governors officially recognized National School Choice Week (NSCW) this year, and state legislatures are brimming with voucher and charter school legislation.

For the first time, a teacher association endorsed the week, which brimmed with 3,600 grassroots events. So did an Olympic basketball athlete, CEOs of major companies, and the Jonas Brothers.

The Association of American Educators is the nation’s largest nonunion teacher association. AAE’s members have diverse education backgrounds and largely support school choice. In an annual survey released in February, seven in ten AAE teachers said they support or tend to support Washington DC’s voucher program, Indiana’s tax deductions for private school expenses, and Arizona’s education savings accounts, a voucher-like program for special needs and low-income children.

Legislators in dozens of states have introduced legislation to give more people a flurry of education options. New or expansions to voucher programs are currently alive in big states such as Texas, Alaska, Montana, and Pennsylvania, and smaller ones including Tennessee, Arkansas, South Carolina, Indiana, Wisconsin, Arizona, Florida, and Nevada.

And it’s not just red states, as lawmakers in Illinois, Ohio, Iowa, and New Jersey are also debating voucher proposals.

Most of these states are also considering legislation to introduce or expand charter and online schools. Others focusing on these options include Hawaii, Mississippi, Michigan, New Mexico, North Carolina, and Nebraska.

That’s means about half the states are considering school choice legislation.