From coast to coast, swarms of parents are showing up at school choice rallies for charter schools, vouchers, tax credit scholarships or all of the above. They’re not angry like the Tea Party or Occupy. They don’t have defiant flags or frayed tents (yellow scarves maybe :)). But they’re just as passionate and far more diverse.
“I want to be able to have a choice for where my daughter can go to schools,” one New York City mom said at a rally last summer. “I don’t want that choice made for me.”
That rally drew 5,000.
In the past year, one in Chicago drew thousands, as did one in Indianapolis. One in Atlanta drew 1,500. One in Boise drew nearly 1,000. One in Los Angeles drew 1,000. Another in Los Angeles drew 5,000.
In Pembroke Pines, Fla., nearly 1,000 showed up earlier this year to demand equal funding for charter schools.
Critics say Astroturf. Perhaps saying it enough has tamped down press coverage.
But people don’t take time out for these kinds of things if they’re lukewarm. There’s something happening here, and all those blips on the radar aren’t about to fade.