Coverage Areas:  National |  South Carolina |  Aiken |  Beaufort |  Charleston |  Columbia |  Greenville |  Myrtle Beach |  Rock Hill
Menu

School choice rally supports parents’ options

School choice rally

COLUMBIA—Thousands packed the Township Auditorium to support the right of parents to pick the best type of education for their child.

Organizers estimated that more than 2,500 people turned out for the annual School Choice Rally on Jan. 25, includ­ing students, parents, teachers and principals from most of the 34 Catho­lic schools in the diocese.

The rally has become an annual event in Columbia, held in conjunc­tion with National School Choice Week. This was one of the largest turnouts, buoyed by what many feel is a growing post-election climate that makes school choice a viable reality for more kids around the country.

The day included song, dance and musical performances by students, and testimonials from people who said school choice has made a posi­tive difference in their lives. The crowd heard a proclamation from Gov. Henry McMaster, and the event was attended by Molly Spearman, state superintendent of education. Students from St. John School in North Charleston presented awards and thank-you cards to legislators.

The rally was sponsored by the Pal­metto Promise Institute, the South Carolina Public Charter School Alli­ance, Public School Options and the S.C. Catholic Conference.

“The goal of the rally and of the school choice movement is just to be able to provide each child the educa­tion option that is best for them,” said Michael Acquilano, director of the S.C. Catholic Conference. “It was good for Catholic schools to be involved in the effort because the school choice movement is vibrant in our communities.”

The Columbia rally promoted a variety of education opportunities, including public, private, charter, and online schools, plus homeschool­ing, Acquilano said.

More than 20,000 events were held nationally to support school choice, according to organizers. There were over 300 events in South Carolina.

Acquilano said there are two pieces of legislation regarding school choice in the very initial stages of consider­ation in the state Senate. He encour­ages people interested in the issue to contact their legislators and explain why school choice is important and beneficial for all children.

Currently in South Carolina, the primary funding regarding school choice comes through the Education Credit for Exceptional Needs Chil­dren Fund, which helps provide tax credits for parents of special needs children who attend private schools, including Catholic schools.

Sister Dale McDonald, a Sister of the Presentation of the Blessed Vir­gin Mary, public policy and research director for the National Catholic Educational Association, said in a Jan. 26 interview with Catholic News Service that the NCEA sees school choice as a justice issue.

“We aren’t meant to serve only the rich. As a Church, we’re committed to serving all God’s people,” she said.

 

Photo provided: Catholic school youth cheer during the School Choice Rally held Jan. 25 at Township Auditorium in Columbia.




  • Diocesan Events Calendar
    View All Events
    Jan 169:30 am Beaufort Deanery Meeting
    From the Calendar of Office of Catechesis
    3:30 pm The Holy Spirit
    From the Calendar of Office of Catechesis Webinars
    6:00 pm "What We Have Seen & Heard: A Reflection & Dialogue on Peace"
    From the Calendar of Ethnic Ministries
    Jan 17 Report Cards Emailed
    From the Calendar of St. Mary School Greenville
    End of 2nd Quarter
    From the Calendar of St. Gregory the Great School
    End of 2nd Nine Weeks
    From the Calendar of St. Anthony School Florence
    Report Cards Issued
    From the Calendar of St. Andrew School Myrtle Beach
    Fun Nite @ OLSS w/CCD
    From the Calendar of Holy Trinity North Myrtle Beach
    Spirit Day
    From the Calendar of Prince of Peace School Taylors
    6:30 pm Sophomore/Junior college Planning Night hosted by Counseling Dept.
    From the Calendar of Bishop England Charleston
    7:00 pm Curso 1- CIC/Biblia Tema #1
    From the Calendar of Pastoral Juvenil
    Jan 18 Last day to drop a second semester class and add another semester class (per BEHS guidelines)
    From the Calendar of Bishop England Charleston
    End of 2nd Quarter
    From the Calendar of St. Peter School Beaufort
    End of Second Quarter
    From the Calendar of St. Joseph School Anderson
    Report Card
    From the Calendar of Our Lady of the Rosary Greenville
    TAG day
    From the Calendar of Our Lady of the Rosary Greenville
    Middle School Gold Card Treat #2
    From the Calendar of Our Lady of the Rosary Greenville
    2:00 pm Dismissal for Faculty Meeting
    From the Calendar of St. Mary School Greenville
    3:00 pm HSA Family meeting
    From the Calendar of Holy Trinity North Myrtle Beach
    3:30 pm Parent-Teacher Conferences
    From the Calendar of Cardinal Newman School