Monday, December 19, 2011

In Virginia, Massie Seeks Critical Mass on School Choice

Virginia Del. Jimmie Massie is among those hoping to bring
comprehensive education reform to the Commonwealth in 2012.
Virginia Delegate Jimmie Massie, a member of the Virginia House of Delegates since 2007, is leading the way to bring real educational options to the Old Dominion State.

In fact, Massie has already led Virginia part of the way to comprehensive reform, by sponsoring a bill last session that would allow low-income students to receive scholarships to attend the school of their parent’s choice. And while House Bill 2314 passed the House 54-45 last year, it failed in the Senate.

But Massie, Governor Bob McDonnell, school choice supporters, and families across Virginia are not giving up.

That’s because Massie is expected to introduce similar legislation this year in order to bring real education options to the Dominion State.

“Too often students aren’t able to reach their full potential because the school they attend is not the best fit and their families can’t afford to send them to a nonpublic school,” Massie said in January 2011.  “By providing this tax incentive […] we will be able to provide school options for students and their parents, in order for them to get the education they deserve, at no cost to the state. This legislation will go far to expand the educational opportunities available to students in Virginia.”

And Virginia already supports school choice.

According to polling data, majorities across all ideological lines support broad school choice measures in Virginia, including the specific programs that make up the bulk of private school choice across America.

Voucher supporters make up the majority across the board (53 percent of Democrats, 67 percent of Republicans, 58 percent of Independents), while supporters of tax credit scholarships (64 percent of Democrats, 68 percent of Republicans, 66 percent of Independents) exist in even larger numbers.

Additionally, there is a groundswell of support from all sides when it comes to special needs scholarships. More than three-fourths of Independents (76 percent), nearly four in five Republicans (79 percent), and a remarkable 81 percent of Democrats approve of special needs scholarships.

With public support behind him, Massie is in a great position to lead Virginia to become the ninth state to offer families educational options through scholarship tax credit programs!

- American Federation for Children | Alliance for School Choice, MSG

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