In a recent guest column, Steve Corbin argued that Iowans already have six choices for education, but what he failed to mention was that many Iowans cannot afford or access educational choice (“Funding Iowa schools,” Jan. 2). In a 2017 poll, 60 percent of Iowans said they would choose something other than a public school for their child if possible. That same majority of Iowans said cost prohibits them from making non-public school decisions.
Parents should be able to choose the best education for their students, and proposed Educational Savings Accounts (ESAs) would allow already-allocated funds to follow a student to the educational institution of their choice. ESAs are a cost-effective way to allow low-income parents the ability to send their students to the school of their choosing.
Professor Corbin also asserted that the $15.5 million Tuition and Textbook Tax Credit goes entirely to private school families, when in reality the majority of those tax credits are claimed by parents with students attending public schools. Corbin asserts that private school funding benefits the rich, but ESAs would bring opportunity to Iowans of all economic classes.
I urge our representatives to support school choice and new opportunities for all Iowans.
Dr. Susan Benya