Chariho School Parents’ Forum

May 8, 2008

FL school choice results

Filed under: School Choice — Editor @ 4:19 pm
Alliance for School Choice Press Release
May 2, 2008

School Choice Competition Working in Florida, New Report Shows


Florida’s McKay Scholarship Program for Students with Disabilities Linked to Public School Achievement Increases.


Washington, D.C. (May 2, 2008)—America’s largest school voucher program for students with special needs, the John M. McKay Scholarship for Students with Disabilities, has led to increased achievement among public school students with special needs, a new report by the New York-based Manhattan Institute reveals.


The Alliance for School Choice—the nation’s preeminent nonprofit organization promoting school vouchers and scholarship tax credit programs—hailed the report as further evidence that the competition brought about by private school choice benefits public schools.


Authored by Jay Greene and Marcus Winters, the report, titled The Effect of Special Education Vouchers on Public School Achievement: Evidence From Florida’s McKay Scholarship Program, concludes that “rather than being harmed, public schools respond to the challenge of exposure to school choice by improving the education they provide.”


According to the study, students with mild disabilities who are educated in Florida’s public schools posted significant test score improvements in math and reading. These gains occurred when other students with special needs transferred from public schools to private schools using the state’s McKay Program.


“The paper is the first quantitative evaluation of a voucher program designed specifically for students with disabilities,” said Alliance President Charles R. Hokanson, Jr. “Jay Greene and Marcus Winters provide a rigorous, scientifically valid, and conclusive study that adds significant substance to the debate over the impact of competition and school choice on public schools.”


The McKay Program was established in 1999 and is benefiting 19,439 students this school year. Throughout the country, five states (Arizona, Florida, Georgia, Ohio, and Utah) offer special needs scholarship programs.


“Several local organizations—including Step Up for Students and the Florida Alliance for Choices in Education—as well as the Florida Department of Education, deserve significant credit for ensuring that this important program benefits not only the students who receive scholarships but students with special needs all throughout the Sunshine State,” said Lori Drummer, state projects director for the Alliance.




  1. The Rag is carrying Mr. Ricci’s water again as they publish a fluff piece on Chariho’s SRO officer. I was alerted to the story by an 11th grade neighbor. We discussed the need for police presence at Chariho. The 11th grader said that the student quoted in the story were intimidated and unlikely to give their true feelings fearing recriminations.

    The officer comments at the end of the story that he is thinking of serving on the School Committee. I wonder if he will come here and share his thoughts on the issues at Chariho?

    Comment by Curious Resident — May 11, 2008 @ 9:36 pm | Reply

  2. Chariho does not need a cop stationed right there. We have wall to wall cops in all three towns and they are minutes away. We had a kid arrested for pushing another kid according to the paper. How stupid is that? We’ve got one adult for every six kids at Chariho and we can’t control the kids without a cop in the building? Barbara C. has a compromise with putting a retired cop or military person in the school. I don’t think we should even pay for that but with all the noise about compromising this would be a good place to start. No cops scaring the kids. A school disciplinarian is more than enough for a school where we’re paying a fortune for the adults we already employ. Let them keep their eyes open for a change.

    Comment by Real Question — May 12, 2008 @ 6:56 pm | Reply

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