For those of you that do not know, before the presidential aspirations, the exploratory committees, the serendipitous DNA results, Senator Elizabeth Warren was once a champion for school choice.
In her 2003 book, “The Two-Income Trap” (co-authored with her daughter, Amelia Warren Tyagi), Warren endorsed a school-voucher system to free children from the tyranny of educrats assigning them to schools based on where their parents can afford to live.
It was during those times; I could see myself backing an Elizabeth Warren run for president. The forward-thinking, the honesty, the willingness to fight for the people was evident in the beginning stages of Warren’s political career.
In an article originated by the NY Post, Warren goes on to state, “With fully funded vouchers, parents of all income levels could send their children — and the accompanying financial support — to the schools of their choice.”
Senator Warren spoke to how zip codes should not be the determining factor of how parents select schools for their children. By selecting schools in this manner, the poor and disenfranchised would always be at a disposition, as schools for the poor are still less desirable than schools for the more affluent. In other words, parents shouldn’t have to buy houses that can’t afford, to have excellent school choices for their children.
Circa 2016, Massachusetts was at the forefront of the school choice debate. The citizens of Massachusetts had a ballot measure Question 2 that supported the expansion of ten new charter schools. Massachusetts charter schools perennially outperform Boston public schools. Adding twelve charter schools would have been a direct measure to level the playing field for the poor, providing them with much need school options.
Senator Warren refused to support the measure. Warren’s rationale for no was as follows, “I will be voting no on Question 2. Many charter schools in Massachusetts are producing extraordinary results for our students, and we should celebrate the hard work of those teachers and spread what’s working to other schools,” Warren said. “But after hearing more from both sides, I am very concerned about what this specific proposal means for hundreds of thousands of children across our Commonwealth, especially those living in districts with tight budgets where every dime matters. Education is about creating an opportunity for all our children, not about leaving many behind.”
That’s a direct contradiction to her initial support for school choice. I don’t know which Senator Warren we’ll get if she’s elected president. It is for that reason that during the early stages of the 2020 presidential campaign, I can’t throw my support around Senator Warren. It’s not to say that I won’t, but as an informed citizen I need to hear more. I have to know that Senator Warren will unconscionably fight school choice options for the poor under any circumstances, even if it means she doesn’t win the Democratic primary. It is then and only then will I be able to throw my support around Senator Warren.