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Voters Agree that Public Education is on the Ballot

A recent poll by the Washington Post and George Mason University’s Schar School of Policy and Government revealed factors that may influence voters in the upcoming election. The poll showed that 70% of registered voters say that education is “very important” in their voting decisions for Virginia Senators and Delegates this November. However, only 30% of those polled were critical of their K -12 public schools.

According to Mark J. Rozell, Dean of the Schar School of Policy and Government at George Mason University, the results of the poll were “striking” because they refute Governor Youngkin’s claim that Virginia’s public schools are failing. Despite Youngkin’s attacks on schools, most parents are happy with their children’s schools.

Another interesting revelation from the poll is that the transgender student policy is less important to voters. Only 34% of those polled say that issue will influence their vote. Interestingly, more disapprove of how Youngkin is handling transgender issues (43%) than approve (37%), and 61% feel schools are not doing enough to protect transgender students, are doing about enough, or don’t have an opinion on the issue.

Those polled said they had more trust in Democrats handling transgender policies (50%) than Republicans (33%). Another interesting result is that parents are more concerned about transgender issues than students are, because students tend to be supportive of their transgender classmates. These results suggest that Governor Youngkin’s insistence that school boards implement his revised transgender student will not influence the outcome of the election…at least not in the way he is hoping.

The Washington Post quoted Dean Rozell’s conclusions from the poll. “It may be heartening to many public educators who feel that they’ve been under attack by a particularly vocal group on the right to learn that most parents think that the public schools are behaving responsibly and seriously trying to deal with issues of learning loss and making sure that their children get a good education…I think it’s a good story to tell about public education.”


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