The “whistle-stop’’ tour is modeled after historic tours in American history that brought attention to issues of national concern, such as women’s rights and civil rights.It’s all part of a plan to “show America that there are so many choices out there,’’ said Campanella, who listed Florida, Indiana, Louisiana and Ohio among the states with good school choice track records. But, he added, “I think every state has room for growth.’’
National School Choice Week also is an opportunity for education providers to focus not on competing with one another, but on their shared goal: to help children learn.
“I see a natural tension between anyone who is going to compete,’’ Campanella said. “But my hope is that they can come together on the basics.’’
A student of traditional public schools “my whole life,’’ and the son of a district school teacher, Campanella said he bristles when he hears people characterize school choice as being at odds with public education.
“People are really talking down the traditional system,’’ he said. “They need to have more confidence in their traditional public schools.’’
The Foundation’s Criminal Justice Initiative pushed the problems to the forefront, proposed practical solutions, brought in leaders from other states to share examples, and created this nonpartisan opportunity. (At the signing of the 2012 Criminal Justice Reform bill.)