This is National School Choice Week, and one of the better ideas along those lines comes in a bill introduced on Jan. 24 by Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) and Rep. Jim Banks (R-IN) to give education savings accounts to military families.
The legislation is co-sponsored by Sens. Mike Braun (R-IN) and Tim Scott (R-SC) .
The U.S. armed forces strive to provide decent education for service members, but as with any large bureaucracy, sometimes parents believe the quality isn’t up to snuff. And sometimes children have special needs or heightened abilities that cannot best be served by a large, institutional program. Banks cites evidence that “roughly a third of military families feel as though the quality of their children’s education is so inadequate that they [the service members] have considered quitting [the armed forces altogether]. This is both a serious national security issue and a moral issue.”
As described by the sponsors, education savings accounts “are parent-driven accounts that allow families to customize their children’s educational experiences. … Eligible uses of account funds include cost of attendance at a private institution, online learning programs, private tutoring, tuition and fees for college preparatory programs, and educational services and therapies, among many others.”
The funds could be used for extracurricular programs and individual classes at nearby public schools as well, and for textbooks and approved educational software. They also could be used for a savings account for college.
Both for purposes of keeping good people in the military and of helping their children reach their full potential, this bill makes a ton of sense. Let the money follow the child — for legitimate educational expenses only, of course — rather than forcing the child into a one-size-fits-all straitjacket.
In recent years, that straitjacket has become controversial, too, as the Pentagon has begun foisting woke-leftist “equity” propaganda , along with radical gender ideology, into its classrooms. The Pentagon’s education branch has hired as its “diversity, equity, and inclusion” honcho a lady name Kelis Wing who has posted patently racist tweets , yet still holds her position.
For all these reasons and more, military families deserve a choice. The bill by Cruz and Banks provides that choice, and it merits swift passage.