Letter to the Editor: Virginia needs parental education savings accounts
This is National School Choice Week. Every January, parents, students, home-schoolers, private/religious academies and many organizations highlight the need for effective education options for all children. Coincidentally, the General Assembly is in session and several bills address this issue.
You are aware that Frederick County school Superintendent David Sovine presented a $187.3 million budget for Frederick County schools. That is an $11.8 million increase over the current budget. This will lead to higher taxes on all working families and property owners in our county. There is a $90 million high school and a $50 million middle school being planned. If we would allow more parental choice options for education, we could reduce these massive infrastructure costs that put all Virginians in debt.
Del. Dave LaRock, one of our Frederick County representatives in the General Assembly, has put forth a bill — House Bill 2238 Virginia parental choice education savings accounts — that would provide parents the opportunity for a choice in how children are educated.
Parental choice education savings accounts are flourishing in many states. We need to be one of them. This bill proposes a plan to create these accounts in Virginia for a limited population of at-risk children. Education spending should prioritize children first, not school buildings or bureaucracies. Quality of education should not be determined by children’s Zip code, their family’s income or their special need. Parental choice helps solve these problems.
Please contact Sen. Jill Vogel and ask her not to miss this one.
Jay L. Marts, Frederick County