(The Center Square) – More than half of Georgia voters support an expansion charter schools in the state, according to a new poll.
The poll, which was conducted on behalf of the Georgia Charter Schools Association, showed 56% of registered voters in Georgia favor increasing the number of public charter schools in Georgia. Support for public charter schools also is strong with more than 6 out of 10 surveyed in favor of the schools.
Charter schools are independent public schools that are not obligated to the follow the direction of the school districts or model of traditional public schools.
“These findings continue to show there is strong demand and support for public charter schools throughout the state of Georgia,” Georgia Charter Schools Association President and CEO Tony Roberts said in a statement. “We believe the COVID-19 pandemic has only heightened the need for more high-quality public charter schools in our state.”
The Public Opinion Strategies’ telephone survey of 600 registered Georgia voters was conducted from July 26 to July 29. The poll’s margin of error was 4%.
Respondents said the most positive aspects of public charter schools included small class size, their ability to offer individualized student support and their accommodation of different learning styles.
Respondents were mostly women (53%), and more than 60% of respondents were white (62%). Another 32% were people of color. About 37% were registered as Republicans, 36% were registered as Democrats and 24% were independents. However, only 35% identified themselves as parents.
The poll showed Georgians of all political affiliations approve of public charter schools.
According to the survey results, 61% of Republicans, 56% of independents and 55% of Democrats expressed support for public charter schools. More than half of the respondents of all political affiliations favor increasing the number of charter schools. Republicans favor charter school expansion the most (62%), while 52% of Democrats and 51% of independents favor charter school expansion.
Female parents overwhelmingly support increasing the number of Georgia charter schools, with 62% voting in favor. Overall, parents were more supportive (59%) of the expansion than voters without children.