Only 12% of Idahoans Would Choose a Public School for Their Children

Kathryn HickokQuickPoint!

The Friedman Foundation for Educational Choice recently released a poll of 1,000 likely voters in Idaho. If they “could select any type of school,” a whopping 12% would choose a “regular public school,” little more than half the number who would choose homeschooling (21%). Private schools were most popular, at 39%, followed by charter schools (25%).

According to the Friedman Foundation, only 4% of those polled ages 36-55—an age group likely to have K-through-12-aged children—responded that they would choose a public school. (67% of participants were indeed parents or guardians of school-aged children.)

Additionally, 47% of those polled rated Idaho’s public school system as “poor” or “fair.” 21% more were “undecided.”

59% named either “academic quality” or “school curriculum” as the reason for their school preference. Clearly, our neighbors to the east aren’t satisfied with the “education” in “public education.” The vast majority of Idahoans would rather choose other options before public schools.

The question for us is, would Oregonians answer differently if given the opportunity?

Kathryn Hickok is Director of the Children’s Scholarship Fund-Portland and Publications Director at Cascade Policy Institute, Oregon’s free market think tank.

© 2007, Cascade Policy Institute. All rights reserved. Permission to reprint in whole or in part is hereby granted, provided the author and Cascade Policy Institute are cited. Contact Cascade at (503) 242-0900 to arrange print or broadcast interviews on this topic. For more topics visit the QuickPoint! archive.

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