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Palmetto Policy Forum Aims To “Empower Students”

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COLUMBIA, S.C. –South Carolina’s new policy action-engine, Palmetto Policy Forum, completed a statewide media tour today, launching a first-of-its-kind online education resource catalogue designed to equip South Carolina families with information about how to take advantage of the education options currently available in the Palmetto State.

Empowering Students: Education Options for South Carolina Families celebrates education options – both public and private – that are promoting customized learning for South Carolina students.  The Forum was joined for the launch by a diverse group of partners: State Superintendent of Education Mick Zais, legislative leaders, local elected officials, StudentsFirst SC, the Public Charter School Alliance of SC, Palmetto Family Council, the Midlands Homeschool Resource Center, the SC Association of Independent Home Schools and the SC Association of Christian Schools.

In announcing the publication, Palmetto Policy Forum President Ellen Weaver said: “This catalogue highlights the stories of South Carolina families who are accessing the powerful opportunity of an education that is truly customized to the needs of their child.  While South Carolina has more options today than ever before, our job’s not done.  We hope this guide will help even more Palmetto State families take advantage of the range of choices available to them. We also hope Empowering Students will inspire lawmakers with information about how, through proven policy ideas, we can continue to expand these options and unleash the potential of every South Carolina child.”

State Education Superintendent Dr. Mick Zais, who joined the launch in Cayce and North Charleston, focused on the new world of education. “Fortunately, South Carolina families have more options in education today than ever before. Whether choosing between traditional public and private schools, public charter schools, virtual schools, or homeschooling, more and more South Carolina parents are being empowered to control and customize their child’s education. That’s a great thing,” Zais said.

Governor Nikki Haley’s office released a statement that highlighted her unique perspective in support of the new resource: “As a mother, I know firsthand that no two children are the same or learn in the same way,” Haley said. “That’s why as Governor, I am proud to see more and more school options for children in South Carolina.Empowering Students is a great resource for parents and students.”

The statewide tour featured stops at Meeting Street Academy in Spartanburg, Midlands Middle College Public Charter in Cayce, and Palmetto Scholars Academy Public Charter in North Charleston.

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The online version of the catalogue may be found at http://tinyurl.com/EmpowerStudentsSC

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