Don’t Let School Choice Lose Ground in Oregon!

During its February special session, the Oregon legislature passed a bill instructing the Oregon State Board of Education to make recommendations to the legislature this fall regarding the governance of virtual charter schools. Last month, the Board met to discuss the future of virtual education in Oregon.

The Board recognizes the importance of virtual charter schools in meeting children’s diverse learning needs and in providing wider access to quality public education throughout the state. However, the Board is considering adopting an approval process that will destroy the power of parents to effectively choose a virtual charter school for their children.

One model under consideration would require school districts to select from a pool of state-approved virtual schools. Students could only choose a virtual school approved by their district and still would have to get permission from their home district to attend the school.

This is a significant step back from the freedom of choice families have fought for in Oregon. Right now, parents have the entire state’s pool of virtual schools to choose from. And parents across the state can choose at least one of the state’s virtual charter schools without getting permission from their home districts.

When will Oregon join other cities and states who are stepping into the 21st century by embracing school choice and online education?

Christina Martin is a policy analyst for the School Choice Project at Cascade Policy Institute, Oregon’s free market public policy research organization.

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Posted by at 06:00 | Posted in Measure 37 | 7 Comments |Email This Post Email This Post |Print This Post Print This Post
  • Scatcatpdx

    The bigger the government the smaller the individual.
    Live and learn folks before supporting public education and think they will allow any choice.

  • Josh

    Yeah – we shouldn’t regulate charter schools. Oversight might prevent stuff like this from happening:

    It’s about the kids, right?

    • Rupert in Springfield

      Not sure how oversight would prevent a school from closing, but okie dokie.

      The point is kids and everyone in life is always at risk from what life throws at one. That might be a school closing and kids losing out on the school year, or it might be a public school not doing its job and passing the kids along.

      No one would argue that education has improved in recent years. Looks like all that vaunted oversight hasn’t done a hell of a lot.

      Well, except increase teacher pay for not doing any better job, and arguably worse, than they were doing before.

      Way to go.

  • anonymous

    I’d like to point out that the school(s) “Josh” refers to in that story were the “favored” online schools in Oregon. They had a cozy relationship with their districts and many “inside” players were much more supportive of those schools than the ones run by the terrible, evil “for-profit” online schools that were not favored… oh, and have no scandals, are run extremely professionally by competent people, are loved by their parents and students, and met AYP last year.

    Things that make you go “hmmm?”

  • Michelle Hupp

    I am a parent who is wanting to enroll my child in an online virtual school program. I have a blog site I would like to encourage parents and supporters of online virtual school programs to check out my blog. There is a link to sign a petition to protect the right for us parents to enroll our child in an online virtual school program. There is also a link to will you will be able to watch a story on us and the struggles we are having.
    My blog address is
    Please come and check it out.

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