School choice advocates, gathered this week at the Democratic National Convention, said they wanted to keep their movement from getting sucked into partisan politics.
“The politics of education has had a toxic stranglehold on the American psyche,” Kevin Chavous, executive counsel of the American Federation for Children, said during a reception Tuesday evening in Philadelphia. A former Democratic member of the Washington D.C. city council, Chavous said supporters should elevate their cause “above the politics of today.”
Rather than get bogged down in battles over the particulars of the party platform, he said, they should share the stories of students like scholarship alum Raushaun Williams.
Williams told the gathering that by the time he got to middle school, he was moving from one public school to another in Philadelphia, with languishing grades and discipline issues. He felt like he didn’t quite fit in. His trajectory changed when he and his mother found out about they Children’s Scholarship Fund of Philadelphia. He received a scholarship through a lottery, allowing him to enroll in a Catholic school — something he said his single mother never could have afforded otherwise.