ORANGE VILLA PARK : Education Initiative Will Be Discussed

Two meetings will be held to provide residents with information on the Parental Choice in Education initiative.

Supporters of the initiative are seeking signatures to put it on the November state ballot.

They say the measure would improve the quality of education by allowing parents to choose the school their children would attend and by encouraging competition among schools.

Under the initiative, the state would provide a type of scholarship to every child to aid with private school costs.

Opponents of the measure say it would destroy the public school system by diverting state funds to private schools and that the scholarships would aid only those who can already afford private school tuition. They argue that public schools help perpetuate American ideas and culture and are a unifying source for young people in a culturally, socially and economically diverse country.

The first meeting will be at 7:30 p.m. Thursday at Cerro Villa Middle School, 17852 Serrano Ave., Villa Park.

Speaking in favor of the initiative will be Kevin Teasley, vice chairman of the Choice in Education League, the group sponsoring the initiative. Speaking against the initiative will be Michael Kilbourne, director of legislative services for the Orange County Board of Education.

A second forum will be at 6 p.m. Tuesday at the Ability Plus School at the former site of McPherson Elementary, 333 S. Prospect St., Orange. David Harmer, head of the Choice in Education League, will speak on the initiative and answer questions. The event is open to the public. For more information, call (714) 744-3394.

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