Education Report Card Reveals Most States Still Below Average

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Indiana Remains Number One, While Mississippi Makes Most Progress on The Center for Education Reform's Parent Power Index

Just six states earn rankings above 80 percent when it comes to giving parents fundamental power over their child’s education, according to the fifth edition of the Parent Power Index (PPI) released today by The Center for Education Reform (CER).

Parent Power Index is a web-based report card that evaluates and ranks states based on qualitative and proven state education policies. The higher a state’s grade, the more parents are afforded access and information about learning options that can deliver successful educational outcomes for their children.

“While it’s true some states have made progress, it’s not nearly enough to meet demand. Simply put, we need more learning options available to more families, and we need them fast,” said Kara Kerwin, president of The Center for Education Reform.

“Out of the over 54 million K-12 students nationwide, only an estimated 6.5 million students are taking advantage of charter schools, school choice programs such as vouchers or tax credits, and digital or blended learning models,” said Kerwin. ”With the United States’ school-aged population expected to grow at unprecedented rates in the next 15 years, how will our school system be able to meet demand when we already have wait lists for charter schools and oversubscribed scholarship programs?”

A median PPI score of 67.4 percent (Delaware) shows just how poorly most states have implemented policies surrounding charter schools, school choice, teacher quality, transparency, and online learning, the five main components that comprise state PPI scores. Mississippi, ranked 20, made the most progress, moving up 21 spots and breaking into the top 20 states after being in the bottom 11 states on previous analyses.

“With 36 governor races this November, it’s time enacting parent-empowering policies take front and center. America’s future depends on states’ ability to enact good policy to accelerate the pace of education reform and grow new and meaningful choices for parents.”

CER President Kara Kerwin and CER Executive Vice President Alison Consoletti Zgainer are available for comment on CER’s Parent Power Index. Members of the media should contact CER Communications Director Michelle Tigani at 301-986-8088 or michelle(AT)edreform.com to set up interviews.

The PPI education scorecard reveals state summary data, while full state-by-state details, including methodology, can be found at parentpowerindex.com.

This year’s Parent Power Index takes into account CER’s first-ever voucher and tax credit scholarship rankings and analysis, School Choice Today: Voucher Laws Across the States Ranking & Scorecard 2014 and School Choice Today: Education Tax Credit Scholarships Ranking & Scorecard 2014.

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Michelle Tigani
The Center for Education Reform
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