Each year, ExcelinEd’s EdPalooza has us thinking for days afterward about how we can further our own organizational goals with the new information we’ve gathered from their program, and from their guest speakers.
This year, we heard from dozens of voices, including former President George W. Bush and Former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, among many other preeminent voices in education and U.S. policy.
We were glad to see some of our like-minded allies share in the conversation as well, including parent choice legend and inspiration for the film “Miss Virginia,” Virginia Walden Ford, and Director of School Choice at Reason Foundation, Corey DeAngelis, who have participated in our own annual Parent Leadership Conference events in years past.
Our takeaways this year broke from those lessons we may have carried with us in previous years, with 2020’s focus on two tremendously important issues: the COVID-19 pandemic, and more important to the work we do, the continuing civil rights issues our country continues to face.
Parental school choice in education has a role to play here. And from where we stand, we believe school choice, and the issues we fight for, can only help to further alleviate families’ struggles related to both.
With school choice, parents can expect better and potentially more reliable access to education options that work for their children as we seek out a solution to the COVID-19 pandemic and resulting shutdowns. With school choice, we can empower marginalized families to choose the option that works best for their child, which often means looking further than their own neighborhood school where their children have been assigned due to districting.
While it’s been a year of admittedly discouraging developments and events, we still have reason to hope. As an organization, we continue to feel good knowing the work we do is continuing to help people, problem-solve, and work to heal decades of inequity in school choice.