The support for school choice demonstrated by the 1997 National Survey of Americans’ Attitudes Toward Education and School Reform, released September 23 by the Center for Education Reform, is consistent with trends shown by the recently released Phi Delta Kappa/Gallup Poll (see “New Poll Shows Increased Support for Vouchers,” School Reform News, October, 1997) and others.
In June 1997, a poll conducted by the Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies showed 86.5 percent of people in the 26-35 age group endorsed a voucher program. The Joint Center noted that “support for school vouchers for use in public, private or parochial schools is surprisingly strong and has substantially increased since the 1996 Joint Center Survey.”
Support for vouchers was strongest among Hispanics, according to the poll. Almost two thirds of Hispanics (65.4 percent) back vouchers compared to 57.3 percent of blacks and 47.2 percent of whites. However, black support for vouchers jumped 19 percent from 1996 to 1997.