American education is in crisis. Many public schools, especially those serving students of challenging socio-economic backgrounds, fail to provide the training necessary to succeed in a modern, global economy. Meanwhile, Catholic schools, traditionally the bastions of excellent academic and moral formation, suffer from funding shortages and lack of mission clarity. While these problems have many dimensions and require reform on many fronts, historian and education policy analyst Kevin Schmiesing identifies the overarching challenge as reinvigorating parental initiative and responsibility in schooling. For policymakers, this means promoting measures that provide maximum financial and legal freedom to parents to choose the method and place of education most appropriate for their children. School choice, he argues, possesses the potential to transform and renew Catholic and public education alike.
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