For parents, providing an education for their children is a moral obligation. When we look across the education landscape in Pennsylvania, however, we see that some parents, especially low-income families, have no choice but to send their children to a school that is not helping them reach their potential. This is why the bishops of Pennsylvania see school choice as a defining social justice issue for our time.
In a statement issued several weeks ago, my brother bishops and I explained our position on school choice with these words: “Legislation currently being considered in Harrisburg could herald a new, more just era for education in Pennsylvania — an era in which we focus on the ideal educational environment for each student, not on a mandatory system in which students are assigned to a school based solely on geographic location. The current treatment of these children, particularly children from low-income families, is unjust and inequitable. Families are often prevented from accessing the educational options that would be best for them because of economic or social barriers. School choice legislation that includes vouchers and an increase to EITC reinforces that parents — not the state — are the primary educators of their children.”