For parents who are unhappy with their child’s current school system, Rep. Jay Hughes (D-Oxford) has the help you have been looking for: Move.
See, it is your fault for living in a bad district or a district that doesn’t meet the needs of your child.
On Tuesday, Rep. Hughes was interviewed after the Mississippi School Choice Day celebration at the Capitol where he said, “Choose where you live. That’s how you pick a school system and if not then make your local school better. Be a part of the solution, not leaving and being a part of the problem.”
This morning, Y’all Politics called these comments Rep. Hughes’ “Let them eat cake” moment, saying, “For a guy who may reportedly be asking hundreds of thousands of non-Oxonians in Mississippi for their votes in 2019, many who do not look like him or share his privilege, the callousness of his remarks are pretty staggering.”
The truth is that is the most elitist, tone-deaf, comment I’ve ever heard. Families can’t just move tomorrow if their child needs a better educational setting today. Moving to neighborhoods with better district schools is often impossible for low-income families. Or for families who are tied down to one location because of a job.
For the past several months, we have talked with Mississippi families. We have talked with families who bought their houses in specific neighborhoods for the highly rated assigned district schools only to discover those schools were not the right fit after all. We have talked with families who are in failing districts but simply cannot move.
And why should families have to leave their homes and communities and livelihoods just to find the right school?
Arbitrary district lines should not determine whether or not your child receives the best education for their individual needs. Parents should be able to make their own decisions for their own family.
School choice has always existed for families who can afford to move or can pay for private school tuition. Unfortunately, for too many families moving or paying for private school tuition is simply impossible.
Our effort is about empowering all families with the freedom to select the best educational setting for their children.