School Choice Favored in Utah Poll

Published March 1, 1998

Utah voters overwhelming support school choice, according to a survey of 300 Utah voters conducted last year by R.T. Nielson for the Utah Coalition for Freedom in Education. Seventy-nine percent of voters surveyed favored providing parents with the option of sending their children to the public, private, or parochial school of their choice. Only 16 percent opposed school choice.

When asked about using school tax dollars to provide scholarships that would follow the child to the school of their choice, 61 percent favored tax-supported school choice. Significantly, if a tax credit or a scholarship made it possible for parents to afford private school tuition, 54 percent would consider sending their children to a private school.

“Many Utahns are fiercely independent,” noted David Salisbury, president of the Salt Lake City-based Sutherland Institute, “and they are deeply concerned that public schools are handicapped and cannot teach basic values.”