WASHINGTON – Today, House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform Chairman Darrell Issa, R-Calif., issued the following statement in recognition of National School Choice Week from Jan 26th – Feb 1st.
“As we celebrate National School Choice Week, it is important that we continue to advocate for educational opportunities for students, no matter what their family income,” said Chairman Issa. “I am proud of the work of the Oversight Committee on behalf of the DC Opportunity Scholarship Program (OSP), which has given thousands of low-income K-12 students in DC the chance to attend alternative private schools of their choice. DC OSP has empowered parents to provide their children with the educational approach that works best for them, rather than a one-size-fits-all system that keeps children in failing public schools. DC OSP should be praised as a model for the nation and not allowed to fade away under pressure from national teachers unions. I will continue to fight to keep the doors open to school choice for DC’s parents and students.”
As the committee of jurisdiction for issues concerning the District of Columbia, Oversight has played a leading role in the national debate on school choice. The Committee worked with local officials, including DC city council members, to restore the DC Opportunity Scholarship Program after President Obama’s administration ended funding for new scholarships in 2009.
The Committee held a hearing where DC OSP parents and students, who would otherwise have no choice but to attend underperforming public schools, testified that the scholarships allowed them to succeed academically. OSP funding was reauthorized in 2011 after provisions in the Scholarships for Opportunity and Results (SOAR) Act were added to the long-term continuing resolution.