While there is no shortage of issues to consider when marking ballots on Election Day, education matters should be high on the list. All citizens, taxpayers, and parents, of course, have a stake in righting our wayward educational ship. Fortunately, the political angle has been front and center since parent-friendly Republican Glenn Youngkin beat out establishment Democrat Terry McAuliffe in Virginia’s gubernatorial election just one year ago.
Many polls of late have shown that our worsening educational malaise is indeed on voters’ minds. A survey by the American Federation of Teachers, the results of which were released in May, revealed that 39 percent of voters reported that they have more confidence in Republicans on education matters, compared with 38 percent for Democrats. While the Republican edge is hardly overwhelming, it still is important, as Democrats have always prevailed in public opinion because of the perception that they’re the education party.
The AFT poll also found that 60 percent of voters in states with competitive U.S. Senate races this year “are dissatisfied with the way racial issues are taught in schools. ” On sexual issues, 58 percent are unhappy with the way schools are handling them.
AFT president Randi Weingarten has constantly vilified Republicans for bringing politics into the classroom. But most survey respondents don’t agree, saying that Democrats are “ more responsible for politicizing education and making education too much a part of the culture war” than Republicans, 33 percent to 28 percent.
A July Gallup poll found only 28 percent of Americans have a great deal of confidence in public schools, down from 41 percent in 2020—a significant drop.
Then in September, the results of a survey commissioned by the National Coalition for Public School Options found that while 71 percent of parents surveyed sent their children to their local public school, 61 […]
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