Education is the first stepping-stone on the path to success, but Pennsylvania students face severe inequality among public school districts. Thousands who can’t afford private school are trapped in failing schools or situations that aren’t the right fit. The solution to this crisis is school choice. By offering families options outside their zip code-assigned district schools, students are better able to find their path to success. Charter schools, tax credit scholarships, education savings accounts (ESAs), homeschooling, and other types of education choice must become a priority in Pennsylvania.

Education

Education Funding Principles

  • Marc LeBlond
  • October 4, 2018

With mid-term elections nearing, both candidates for governor are wrestling with how to create a better education system, including a more equitable funding system. Here are five principles any education…

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Education

Back-to-School Disappointment for Thousands

  • Colleen Hroncich
  • October 1, 2018

Thousands of kids across Pennsylvania are finishing up their first month of school. For many of them, the beginning of the school year is an exciting chance to catch up with…

Media

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Education

Opportunity Denied: To Meet Demand, Tax Credit Scholarship Caps Must Expand

  • Marc LeBlond
  • September 27, 2018

The 2018-19 state budget included a $25 million expansion of Pennsylvania’s Educational Improvement Tax Credit (EITC) program. This will allow up to 15,000 additional students to receive scholarships. While helpful, 52,857…

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Education

Young Entrepreneurs in Action

  • Colleen Hroncich
  • September 18, 2018

It’s rare to see kids voluntarily give up their Saturday to work. But that’s exactly what my 12- and 14-year old daughters—along with a dozen other kids—did at the recent…

Media

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Education

More is Not Always Better

  • Marc LeBlond
  • September 10, 2018

In the ongoing school funding case, William Penn School District v. Pennsylvania Department of Education, several school districts are suing the state on the grounds that Pennsylvania has…

Media

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Education

Safe Schools and School Choice

  • Marc LeBlond
  • August 24, 2018

It’s back-to-school time. For parents, sending children into someone else’s care can be bittersweet. We want our kids to experience the wonder of learning and the joy of play. But…

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Education

“Sick Schools”: Philadelphia Students Deserve Better

  • August 8, 2018

Earlier this year, the Philadelphia Inquirer and Daily News published a shocking series, “Toxic City: Sick Schools.” The report revealed abysmal conditions in Philadelphia district schools: peeling lead paint,…

Media

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Education

Filling in the Gap: Cyber Charter Schools

  • August 6, 2018

Last month, the Commonwealth Foundation sat down with cyber charter school leaders Dr. Maurice “Reese” Flurie, Tom Longenecker, and Christine Hakes to discuss school choice. As the CEO, COO, and…

Media

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Criminal Justice Reform

Spending Trends & Policy Developments Under Gov. Wolf

  • Nathan Benefield
  • July 31, 2018

In the last four years Pennsylvania has experienced rapid state spending growth. On the plus side, constant tax hike proposals have been largely rejected and policies like pension reform, school…

Memo

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Education

Philly’s Soda Tax is Legal But Not Beneficial

  • July 20, 2018

This week the Pennsylvania Supreme Court upheld Philadelphia’s soda tax, citing the Sterling Act as grounds for their decision. While supporters celebrate their good intentions, the tax is…

Media

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Education

ESAs: The Future of Education

  • Colleen Hroncich
  • July 19, 2018

“Hold the pickles, hold the lettuce. Special orders don’t upset us. All we ask is that you let us serve it your way.” This Burger King jingle from the 1970s…

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Education

Statement on 2018 AFT Convention

  • July 15, 2018

Commonwealth Foundation VP and COO Nathan Benefield issued the following statement regarding the American Federation of Teachers convention taking place in Pittsburgh this weekend. The convention’s keynote speakers on Friday,…

Press Release

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Education

A New Push for Student-Based Ed Funding?

  • Marc LeBlond
  • July 9, 2018

Despite a history of one-note rhetoric about underfunded schools—and thus pushing for more spending and higher taxes—recent comments indicate Governor Wolf may be open to more nuanced education solutions. In…

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Education

School Choice Momentum in Pennsylvania

  • Colleen Hroncich
  • July 5, 2018

The Educational Improvement Tax Credit (EITC) program established Pennsylvania as a school choice leader when it was introduced in 2001. The program helps thousands of students, but it hasn’t kept…

Media

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Education

What does Janus mean for school choice?

  • Colleen Hroncich
  • July 1, 2018

On June 27th, the U.S. Supreme Court issued a historic ruling in Janus v. AFSCME. The 5-4 decision found that forcing public sector workers to pay union fees—or lose their jobs—violates their…

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Education

Students Win Big with Tax Credit Scholarship Boost

  • Nathan Benefield
  • June 26, 2018

The recently enacted state budget includes a $25 million increase in the successful and popular Education Improvement Tax Credit (EITC) program. This increase is tremendous for families—given that…

Media

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Education

Impact of ESAs Under HB 2228

  • Colleen Hroncich
  • June 26, 2018

Education is not one-size-fits-all. For children with special needs, this is particularly true. Ann and Tony Zanca of Florida know this first hand. Their 14-year-old son Ben has dealt…

Media

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Education

Every Child Deserves the Opportunity to Succeed

  • June 21, 2018

The Ben Franklin Bridge is all that separates Pennsylvania students from Camden, New Jersey, where families choose from a diverse menu of schools. In 1999, New Jersey enacted the…

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Education

House-Passed Spending Plan Holds Line on Taxes

  • June 20, 2018

Today, the Pennsylvania House passed a $32.7 billion 2018-19 spending plan in an overwhelming, bipartisan vote (188-10). The legislation, House Bill 2121, avoids tax increases and pulls back from…

Press Release

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Education

The Urgent Need for Tax Credit Scholarships

  • Marc LeBlond
  • June 19, 2018

Pennsylvania’s tax credit scholarship programs have helped many students, but thousands of students are turned away each year. Senate Bill 1204 would end the supply problem by allowing tax credit…

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