PublicSchoolOptions.org is an alliance of parents that supports and defends parents' rights to access the best public school options for their children. The Coalition supports the creation of public school options, including charter schools, online schools, magnet schools, open enrollment policies and other innovative education programs. Additionally, we advocate for free and equal access without restrictions to these public schools for all children.
What We Believe
We believe students learn in unique ways, and it is not possible for every student's learning needs to be met by the nearest traditional neighborhood public school;
We believe parents should have innovative public school options to meet the learning needs of their children;
We believe public school options are increasingly provided from coast-to-coast through charter schools, online schools, magnet schools, open enrollment policies, and other innovative education programs.
We resolve all families should have access to the public school options that best serve their children's learning needs.
Who We Are
Our organization was founded by parents who are dedicated to supporting and defending public school options in their states and around the country.
PublicSchoolOptions.org Board of Directors
Beth Purcell, South Carolina, President
Cherie Nielsen, Virginia, Treasurer
Alisa Hug, Georgia, Director
Sandy Smith, Michigan, Director
Tillie Elvrum, Colorado, Director
Lauren Marshall, Oklahoma, Director
Amy Threewitt, Wyoming, Director
What We Do
Public charter schools and distance education through public online schools are two vital elements of public school choice. Currently there are over 2 million students enrolled in over 5,600 charter schools in 40 states and the District of Columbia. As of February 2012, there were 250,000 full-time online students in 30 states and the District of Columbia.
PublicSchoolOptions.org advocates on national and state levels for public education options that best serve each student's unique learning needs. The Coalition works to keep these options accessible to students across the United States who are currently enrolled in innovative public schools, and to ensure that these options are made accessible to students and their families in every state.
The Coalition informs policymakers and the public about the benefits of public education options and innovative public schools. Through sponsoring school visits, live learning demonstrations, family days at capitols, newsletters, policy briefings, news coverage, and more, the Coalition works to raise awareness about the benefits of public education options.
The Coalition challenges legislative threats to public education options, fights for adequate and equitable funding, and dispels myths and misrepresentations about innovative public schools. With demand for public school options increasing every year, it is imperative that barriers to innovative schools are removed and students have open and equal access to all public school options.
Download the 2013 PublicSchoolOptions.org Scrapbook
In the News...
Can virtual schools perform as well as a traditional classroom?
March 10, 2014
For some kids, traditional school isn't necessarily the best option. They may have medical needs that make getting to school difficult, or perhaps they're athletes who travel frequently to train and compete. In these cases, a virtual education might serve them better. This week, parents and teachers of students who attend such schools spent a day at the state capitol. There they met to try and bring more attention to virtual education, an issue they say is often misunderstood.
Education, Nonprofit, Government & Tech Worlds Collide this Month in Virtual Agreement
February 27, 2014
Technology is not the answer. At least not "the entire answer," according to President Obama's February 4 speech on ConnectED, the federal program designed to connect 99 percent of America?s schools to the Internet. Announced just prior to Digital Learning Day, the comment could seem oddly placed. As PBSLearningMedia, the National Writing Project, and the Library of Congress join the digital learning frenzy, it seems that the education, nonprofit, government and technology worlds collide this month in virtual agreement.
School choice makes a difference for children
February 3, 2014
It's a new year in Lansing and lawmakers are busy proposing bills, debating hot topics and, most importantly to parents like us, talking about how to make sure every Michigan child gets the best possible education. Whether its discussion over the spending figures Gov. Rick Snyder cited in his State of the State speech, talk about giving schools letter grades or the debate surrounding Common Core education standards, public education remains the hot topic.
Is NYC Charter Battle a "National Bellwether"?
Thursday, March 6, 2014
New York City's high-profile battle between charter schools and first-term mayor Bill de Blasio could be a "national bellwether," says one news outlet. Widely perceived as anti-charter, Mayor de Blasio drew fire last week for withdrawing agreements to allow public charter schools to share facility space with the city's traditional public schools.
Take to the Capitols!
Wednesday, March 5, 2014
Parents across the country continue the season of legislative advocacy by holding Capitol Day celebrations in their states. In the last week alone, both the Arkansas and Tennessee chapters of PublicSchoolOptions.org gathered to visit legislators, acknowledge champions and strategize ways to broaden education opportunities for more families.