I strongly support choice, partly because Ed and I had sufficient income to exercise choice by, first, moving to a district we couldn't afford* (because we thought affluent suburbs had private school education at public school prices)** and, second, withdrawing our 'neurotypical' son from our public school and enrolling him in a Jesuit high school.
Choice number 2 was the best money we ever spent.
As a simple matter of fairness, I believe that if we had choice, other parents should have choice, too.
How school choice would turn out is another question, and I certainly agree with froggiemama that the prospect of public schools taking the path colleges and universities have taken (more, more amenities) gives me the willies.
On the other hand, we do have evidence from other Western countries that I think should be part of the conversation.
We also have evidence from Project Follow-Through, in which low-income parents chose Direct Instruction over progressive education (must rustle up the link - sorry it's not here).
My two favorite what-do-parents-want stories:
In any event, it's definitely the case that a number of Western countries fund parochial schools (or fund parents who want to send their children to parochial schools).
Also germane to the discussion: Andrew Cuomo is supporting tax credits for school choice.
In his fifth State of the State speech, the governor also called for an education tax credit for donations to public schools or scholarship funds that aid students in parochial schools, a top priority of Timothy Cardinal Dolan.I'm ambivalent about Governor Cuomo, but he does seem like a pretty savvy political operator:
Cuomo proposes sweeping education changes
While the bill is supported by some 20 unions, who say that it would help the children of their members, the New York State teachers’ union staunchly opposes it, calling it a backdoor voucher program that directs tax dollars to private schools.* Almost sufficient income
Cuomo’s Education Agenda Sets Battle Lines With Teachers’ Unions
** Reality turned out to be exactly the opposite: public school education at private school prices.