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Independently-managed education: Creating a robust education market by understanding school choice families

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Author: Hunt, David
BC independent school enrolment has steadily increased over four decades. This study is the first in a generation to survey parents to understand why this is, who chooses independent schools, and evaluate what to do about it. The overwhelming majority of independent school parents are very satisfied with their independent school. Of the many reasons given, nearly all parents agree their independent school offers a supportive and nurturing environment that is motivating for and instills confidence in students, thanks to outstanding teachers and excellent administration. BC’s independent schools serve diverse families and communities, and meet demand for pedagogical variations and emphases unmet by public schools. This paper presents evidence and policy options for expanding educational choice in BC through Scholarship Tax Credits (STCs), Autonomous Public Schools (APS), and recommends a voucher-like Education Savings Account (ESA) that reroutes education funds to parents (for students), allowing for a fully tailored education experience.
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