Pennsylvanians talk about education reform
In September 2011, Terry Madonna Opinion Research conducted a survey of Pennsylvanians. The survey asked for opinions about a variety of education reform initiatives.
Pennsylvanians said that they oppose tuition vouchers.
They also oppose Governor Corbett’s $860 million in public school funding cuts as well as initiatives to increase the number of charter schools and “outsource” public schools to for-profit companies.
What do Pennsylvanians support?
More than 80 percent support real, proven reforms like individualized student attention and tutoring, reduced class sizes, programs that improve school safety, and early childhood education.
Here is what Pennsylvanians said.
Two-Thirds of Pennsylvanians Oppose Taxpayer-Funded Tuition Vouchers
By a margin of nearly two to one, respondents indicated strong opposition to tuition “vouchers,” which would give state tax dollars to parents to send their children to a private school of their own choosing.
Even among the approximately one-third of Pennsylvanians who favor vouchers, 81 percent of them are less likely to support vouchers if it means less money for their local public schools.
More Than Half of Pennsylvanians Oppose Increasing Charter Schools and “Outsourcing” Public Schools to For-Profit Companies
Pennsylvanians do not support expanding charter schools by turning public schools over to for-profit companies.
Fifty-seven percent of Pennsylvanians oppose an increase in the number of charter schools in their communities. By an even larger majority, 62 percent of Pennsylvanians oppose “outsourcing” public school operations to for-profit companies.
Nearly 70 Percent of Pennsylvanians Oppose Governor Corbett’s Unprecedented Public School Funding Cuts
By a wide margin, Pennsylvanians oppose the $860 million in public school funding cuts for the 2011-12 academic year. Sixty-nine percent oppose the cuts, compared to 27 percent who support them, with 4 percent undecided.
In fact, nearly two-thirds of Pennsylvanians say public funds should be used to improve public schools rather than provide tuition vouchers.
More Than 80 Percent Of Pennsylvanians Support Real Reforms
In contrast to tuition voucher, charter school, and outsourcing initiatives, Pennsylvanians show strong support for real, proven public school reforms.
Initiatives like individualized student attention and tutoring, reduced class sizes, programs that improve school safety, and early childhood education garner support from 80 to 90 percent of Pennsylvanians.
(Click on the graph to view larger version)
These are components of PSEA’s Solutions That Work package.