In January 2015, Senator Tim Scott (R-SC) has introduced the Creating Hope and Opportunity for Individuals and Communities through Education (CHOICE) Act, designed to make vouchers more widely available to the poor so they can go to private or charter schools.
“This pilot program would cost $10 million, and we’ve already paid for it,” said the Republican senator, “For those states that already have options, we are not dictating or mandating anything on any state, we are saying, here is another weapon in your arsenal to help those kids who are especially vulnerable to not seeing their full potential realized.”
The Act aims at expanding educational opportunities for children with disabilities, children in military families, and children of low-income families in the Washington D.C. area.
“At the end of the day the goal is simply this: to improve the quality of education, improve access to education, and at the same time hold private schools and public schools accountable to [help children become adults] who are able to learn and able to work when they leave the school.”
Meanwhile in April 2015, the Friedman Foundation for Educational Choice released a study on the Children’s Scholarship Fund Baltimore (CSFB), a needs-based scholarship provider for “students from low-income families in the Baltimore area who attend the private or parochial schools of their choice in kindergarten to eighth grade.”
The study found that “college attendance rates of both scholarship recipients (84 percent) and their parents (53 percent) were higher than the national and Baltimore averages.”
And despite their low-income financial situations, “scholarship recipients tended to have more highly educated parents than the general population, and most parents (98 percent) held a strong desire to have their child graduate from college.”
In fact, the children from parents without college degrees were “more likely to go to college than children of parents who just had some college education (83 percent vs. 80 percent).”
The program funds uniforms, school supplies and transportation tuition and scholarship recipients are also not limited to any particular high school types, ranging between public neighborhood schools, Catholic high schools, charter schools, or secular private schools.