The Locker Room

School choice in full bloom

Posted by Dr. Terry Stoops at 11:41 AM

Read this Tucson Citizen article and dream about the day that you, like the Joyce family, will be able to enjoy school choice.

TUSD (Tucson Unified School District) began a campaign last school year to keep students and entice hundreds of charter students back to the district.

The effort didn't keep the Joyce family from leaving.

"TUSD has been cutting back on programs . . . but Tanque Verde [Unified School District] is still offering art, music and Spanish," at the elementary school level, said Barb Joyce, the boys' mother. "At Soleng Tom (Elementary, where the boys had been), the PTA bought a mobile computer lab for the school. There was not enough room for a whole computer lab.

"But at Tanque Verde Elementary, there is a permanent computer lab, a science room. I just think it will be a better, less stressful education for them and they will get the extras TUSD is not able to offer anymore.

"They also will have smaller class sizes and that all adds up to teachers who aren't as stressed and to a better education..."
The interesting part is that TUSD is not getting the message. TUSD officials have increased advertising efforts, but seem to be doing little to improve classroom teaching and improve access to instructional resources. Perhaps that is why TUSD has lost more than 4,000 students to district, charter, and private schools.

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