Science & Tech

In Dayton, parents’ satisfaction increased by moving children to private schools

1 min read

Cheating, fighting, and vandalism diminish as problems

Parents in Dayton, Ohio, reported increased satisfaction after they moved their children to private schools. A private scholarship program sponsored by Parents Advancing Choice in Education (PACE), a non-profit organization in Dayton, helps low-income families afford private education. Parents who took advantage of the opportunity to switch schools for their children were much happier than parents whose children attended public schools. According to an independent evaluation by the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University, 40 percent of parents whose children attend private schools of their choice gave their school an “A” in spring 2000, compared with 16 percent of similar public-school parents. According to evaluation co-author Paul E. Peterson, “The evidence is clear-when Dayton parents are given a choice regarding their children’s education, they find places they consider to be better and safer learning environments.” The evaluation was funded by grants from the Lynde and Harry Bradley Foundation, the Thomas B. Fordham Foundation, the Milton and Rose D. Friedman Foundation, the John M. Olin Foundation, the Smith Richardson Foundation, and the Walton Family Foundation.