September 8, 2020 3:52PM

Happy New School Year? Cato’s Center for Educational Freedom Has You Covered

A sign on a closed local school because of the coronavirus. Photo by Breawycker

Ordinarily, the end of Labor Day weekend signals the return to school for the vast majority of American children. And while most kids will have resumed their K-12 education by today, this is not ordinary: millions will not be returning to school buildings even if their parents desperately want them to, while many in buildings may much prefer to be learning elsewhere.

Cato’s Center for Educational Freedom has been closely analyzing the transition from surprise lockdowns last year, to the muddled, volatile start of the new school year. Of course, our focus is always on freedom in education, and if anything has proven how desperate the need for freedom is, it has been COVID-19. Different communities, families, and educators face different disease threats, have different tolerances for risk, and are dealing with different educational needs, but are far too often being told they can have only one type of education for their tax dollars: whatever their school district, often strong‐​armed by teachers unions, allow them.

That is unacceptable.

Below are links to Center for Educational Freedom work over the last few months on a number of COVID‐​related issues, especially the pandemic’s impact on private schools, which we have tracked more closely than perhaps anyone else. We also explain why the need for choice is now obvious, why public school unionization is problematic, and how pandemic “pods” could be affordable for everyone. And stay tuned – there is a lot more analysis to come!

One Size Does Not Fit All

COVID-19 Has Made It Undeniable: We Need School Choice

Private Schools’ Response to COVID-19

Private Schools Adapted to Lockdown Better Than the Public School Monopoly

COVID-19’s Impact on Private Education

COVID-19 Permanent Private School Closure Tracker

Private School Enrollment 2020–21: Estimates

Private and Public Schools Down, Homeschooling and Charters Up?

Private Schools Face Financial Despair: To Help, Just Treat Them Equally

The True Price of Private Schools

When It Comes to Money, Most Private Schools Are Not Sidwell Friends


Teachers Unions Are More Powerful Than You Realize—but That May Be Changing

It’s Union Power, Not Safety Issues, That’s Determining Which US Schools Reopen This Fall

Pandemic “Pods”

By the Numbers: If Public Schools Shared, The Poor Could Pod

‘Pandemic Pods’ Make Homeschooling Easier for Parents, Profitable for Teachers