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Opinion: From a Boone County parent to Jefferson City: This shouldn’t be about controversy – please focus on our children’s needs

I am writing to express my support for Senate Bill 727, which authorizes the establishment of charter public schools in our county. As a parent living in Boone County, I believe that every public school should serve the children in our county and city well. But the unfortunate reality is that sometimes schools fail to meet the needs of students, leaving parents and children feeling trapped and vulnerable.

Charter public schools provide an alternative option for families when traditional schools fail to meet their needs. Furthermore, empirical evidence from across Missouri shows that charter schools consistently deliver high academic performance for all students. A recent study by Stanford University in 2023 revealed that charter students in Missouri receive 39.3 additional days of learning in reading and a whopping 56.1 additional days of learning in math in a single school year compared to other schools. These findings underscore the value of charter schools in fostering accelerated learning outcomes.

Every child deserves access to a diverse range of educational options tailored to meet their unique needs and aspirations. Charter schools provide families with flexibility in selecting an educational environment that aligns with their child’s individual learning styles and preferences.

A high-quality education should not be available only to those who can afford it. While a neighborhood-zoned school may suit some families, it should not be the sole public educational pathway for everyone. The passage of Senate Bill 727 is not just a matter of policy; it is a moral imperative to prioritize the welfare and future prospects of our children. By supporting the establishment of charter public schools in Boone County, we affirm our commitment to placing children’s interests above political agendas. I urge you to stand on the side of progress and equality by supporting the passage of Senate Bill 727 for the betterment of our community’s educational landscape. It is time we put children first.