WASHINGTON—The Heritage Foundation announced a set of new initiatives to empower parents in their children’s education and provide families with more choice in selecting the education options that are best for them.
This week, Heritage partnered with The Washington Examiner to launch a week of action to amplify the importance of “Empowering Families in Education.” The week of action will include numerous op-eds from school-choice experts and scholars, panel events, and new episodes of “The Kevin Roberts Show” and “Heritage Explains” focused on school choice and empowering parents.
Other organizations involved in the “Week of Action” include Alliance Defending Freedom, American Enterprise Institute, American Federation for Children, EdChoice, Heritage Action for America, Independent Women’s Forum, and State Policy Network.
During and even after the COVID-19 pandemic, many families struggled with emergency remote learning, oppressive mask and vaccine mandates, and woke coursework—all while student achievement dropped. Meanwhile, those schools doubled down on indoctrinating students with woke racial and gender ideologies that do not reflect their parents’ values and contradict the ideals that make our republic great.
The Heritage Foundation recognizes special interest groups and government officials have worked together to obstruct parents from having a voice within their children’s schools. As the start of the school year begins, parents must be prepared to fight for education freedom and school choice, which we know give children the best chance to succeed in both school and life.
School choice rejects the “wokeism” taking over the school system and is rooted in equality of opportunity. For that reason, all taxpayer dollars should follow children and not the system.
During a kick-off panel event hosted by the Examiner’s Kaylee McGhee White, Heritage President Kevin Roberts noted, “It’s difficult for me as a historian of our republic to think of another example in the last 75 years of a system that has gotten so much money that has done so much to resegregate American kids.”
Lindsey Burke, director of Heritage’s Center for Education Policy; Corey DeAngelis, senior fellow with the American Federation for Children; and Tiffany Justice, co-founder of Moms for Liberty, also contributed their expert perspectives to the event.
Roberts released the following statement on the week of action:
“As a career educator, I know firsthand that nothing is more important than the learning and critical thinking skills we impart to the next generation. Sadly, the underperforming education bureaucracy—for which the government charges taxpayers $770 billion per year—has lost its way and is no longer focused on the welfare of children. Instead, the hypocritical enemies of school choice—the Democrat politicians, teachers union elites, and media propagandists who send their own kids to private schools—are more invested in advancing political causes and pushing woke curricula that do nothing to educate our children. All parents deserve the right to make the education choices that are best for their own families, and it’s time the education bureaucracy got out of the way—the School Choice Moment demands it. That’s what we’re focused on not just during this incredible week of action, but every day at The Heritage Foundation.”
Heritage Action Executive Director Jessica Anderson, in her op-ed contribution, summed up the debate succinctly, laying out how parents and aligned lawmakers can triumph over “Big Education”:
“To break up the cartel of big education, parents have to be able to opt-out of the current system altogether. The next front in the parental revolution will require state and federal lawmakers to forcefully enact school choice and return power to the parents. … For parents, this is our moment. It has never been more important or more possible to strike back against Big Education. It is time to advocate for these policies to our state and federal legislators, get involved with our local school boards, and join parent organizations.”
The central point both Heritage aims to drive home: It is time to empower parents and end the stranglehold that teacher unions and unelected elites have over education in America.
Resources and notable upcoming events include the following: