By: Lanetra Bennett
Tallahassee, FL - America's largest-ever celebration of education reform has kicked off.
Supporters are celebrating Florida School Choice Week.
Heather Shaw Armstrong has had two children go to Bethel Christian Academy in Tallahassee, one currently enrolled, and a two year old entering the childhood program next year.
Armstrong says, "They have given children strong foundations. They encourage, up-build children. We can pray in school because we're a Christian school. Your children get a very good foundation here. I just love Bethel Christian Academy."
One of the things she loves most is the fact that she had a choice.
January 27th through February 2nd is "Florida School Choice Week."
Supporters say parents should have more choices when it comes to schools for their children.
Options such as public charter schools, magnet schools, private schools, online academies, and homeschooling.
Leon County Public Schools have a choice program. It offers several options to parents.
For example, Rickards High School's International Baccalaureate Program, which is an accelerated academic program, and Godby High's Information Technology Magnet Program.
Dr. Alan Cox with Leon County Schools says, "They can come out of that with an Adobe certification. They can actually come out with some certification, what they call industry-level certification to go right to work with or to go on to college with."
There are eleven schools in Leon County's choice package: 4 elementary school, 5 middle schools, and 2 high schools.
Students anywhere in the district can go, regardless of their school zone.
Parents have until March 1st to submit applications for Leon County's School Choice and Reassignment Program.
Florida School Choice Week coincides with National School Choice Week.
The Governor of Florida has declared this week "Florida School Choice Week," joining half of America's governors in celebrating the need for effective education options for children.
More than 3,600 events -- including many activities in Florida -- are planned across the country for National School Choice Week, which runs until February 2. Supporters of the effort say that parents should have more choices when it comes to schools for their children, including expanded access to traditional public schools, public charter schools, magnet schools, private schools, online academies, and homeschooling.
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Half Of America’s Governors Endorse National School Choice Week As America’s Largest-Ever Celebration of Education Reform Kicks Off
12 state legislatures, 23 mayors also endorse The Week; First-ever whistle-stop train tour for school choice travels from Los Angeles to New York after record-breaking kickoff event in Phoenix, Arizona
WASHINGTON, DC (Jan. 29, 2013) - In an unprecedented demonstration of unity, half of America’s governors are officially celebrating National School Choice Week 2013, organizers announced today. Twenty-five governors either have issued or will issue proclamations in honor of National School Choice Week stating that the week of Jan. 27 through Feb. 2 is officially “School Choice Week” in their respective states.
The governors are joined by 23 mayors and 12 state legislatures that will issue resolutions and proclamations in support of National School Choice Week, as well.
The 19 governors who have already signed proclamations include:
Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer
Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper
Florida Gov. Rick Scott
Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal
Indiana Gov. Mike Pence
Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal
Maine Gov. Paul LePage
Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder
Nevada Gov. Brian Sandoval
New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie
New Mexico Gov. Susana Martinez
Ohio Gov. John Kasich
Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin
Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Corbett
South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley
Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam
Texas Gov. Rick Perry
Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell
Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker
Prominent mayors who have endorsed National School Choice Week include Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson, Denver Mayor Michael Hancock, Charlotte Mayor Anthony Foxx and Asheville, N.C. Mayor Terry Bellamy. Phoenix Mayor Greg Stanton recently spoke in support of school choice at National School Choice Week’s 7,200 person kickoff celebration in Phoenix, Arizona, this past Friday.
“With the involvement of 25 governors and leaders from 32 states, and with 3,500 events going on all over the country, National School Choice Week 2013 is truly making history,” said National School Choice Week President Andrew Campanella. “We choose everything in this country – the clothes we wear, the cars we drive, the candidates we vote for. Why don’t more parents get to choose the educational environments that are right for their children?”
In its third year, National School Choice Week 2013 runs from Jan. 27 through Feb. 2 and its 3,500 independently-planned and independently-funded events span all 50 states. Supporters of National School Choice Week believe that states must do more to expand access to challenging and motivating educational options, from high-performing public schools to public charter schools, magnet schools, private schools, digital and online learning and homeschooling.
For more information on National School Choice Week, visit: http://www.schoolchoiceweek.com