Best of the week on reimaginED

The best school choice option you’ve never heard of

Like many students in Florida, Desiree Schmidt had multiple options when it was time to decide on high school. She chose to stick with Dayspring Academy, the charter school she had attended since kindergarten, and to enroll in its “early college” program. Neither Desiree’s mom, a hairdresser, nor her dad, an electrician, had gone to college. So they loved a program where Desiree could earn a diploma and a two-year degree at the same time. It wasn’t easy. Desiree, now 16, said there were times early in high school that the intensity of college prep READ MORE

podcastED: reimaginED executive editor discusses modernizing public education transportation with A for Arizona’s Emily Anne Gullickson

On this episode, Matthew Ladner speaks with the president of the Arizona-based education nonprofit about the group’s work to create an innovation fund to seed new options for families that need more choices for getting their children to school. Both Ladner and Gullickson, staunch supporters of education choice, acknowledge that choice cannot be choice without workable transportation. The two discuss the history of public education transportation funding and the possibilities for communities to work with organizations such as Boys and Girls Clubs and YMCAs. READ MORE

Innovator, education choice advocate keeps one eye on Florida as South Carolina forges ahead with education savings accounts

Ellen Weaver epitomizes education choice. She attended a private Christian school from kindergarten to fifth grade, was homeschooled from sixth to tenth grade, and graduated from a district high school. Since 2013, she has worked as founding president of the nonprofit Palmetto Promise Institute to bring expanded choice to her native South Carolina. “I’m so grateful to my parents for the incredible sacrifices they made to get me the opportunities I needed,” said Weaver, who grew up in Iowa but came home to attend college at a Bob Jones University, READ MORE