Can you be a “defender of public education” even if you send your kids to private school?
It’s a question we’ve discussed at length, and with good reason. There seems to be no shortage of politicians who exercise school choice by enrolling their children in high achieving private schools, even while vehemently denying less privileged families the same option.
In fact, this study by the Heritage Foundation points out how many members of Congress make full use of private schools to educate their children.
According to the 2007 survey:
- 37 percent of Representatives and 45 percent of Senators in the 110th Congress sent their children to private schools-almost four times the rate of the general population.
- Over 23 percent of House Education and Labor Committee members and 33 percent of Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee members exercised private school choice.
- Exactly 52 percent of Congressional Black Caucus members and 38 percent of Congressional Hispanic Caucus members sent at least one child to private school.
Perhaps if these same elected officials had been voting to support the educational choices of other parents, states like South Carolina would already be on the road to real improvement. Sadly, voters continue to elect leadership that by and large looks out for itself, not for the working families who really need the help.