Arizona | August 21, 2023

Major⁠i⁠⁠t⁠y of Ar⁠i⁠zona Vo⁠t⁠ers Suppor⁠t⁠ Educa⁠t⁠⁠i⁠on Sav⁠i⁠ngs Accoun⁠t⁠s

A new poll found that school choice and Education Savings Accounts (ESA), in particular, are broadly popular in Arizona. 

The poll conducted by WPA Intelligence on behalf of yes. every kid. foundation. found that over three-quarters of parents (78%) and almost two-thirds of non-parents (62%) support ESAs. 

When voters were informed of efforts to kick thousands of kids, including those with special needs, out of the program, overall support for the ESA program rose significantly. 

Last July, Arizona passed its Empowerment Scholarship Accounts program, a universal ESA that enables all 1.1 million K-12 students to access the program. The program modernizes education funding by providing families the ability to direct funds to tuition, tutoring, therapies, supplies, technology, and other educational expenses. Tens of thousands of families have already chosen to use the program to pursue an education that meets their child’s unique needs.

The August poll showed three times more Arizona voters support school choice (63%) than oppose it (21%). Support is strong among both Republican (78%) and Independent (61%) voters, with more Democrats in support (48%) of school choice than opposed (38%).

Results showed that Governor Katie Hobbs has a weak image in the state, with just 34% of voters holding a favorable view of the governor and 38% of voters viewing the governor unfavorably. Her negatives skyrocket by 14 percent when voters are presented with some of her policies. The most impactful message voters responded to was, “Governor Katie Hobbs is trying to kick more than sixty thousand kids, including thousands with special needs, out of their schools.”  

Arizona has been a longtime leader in the education freedom movement, with many states following suit and passing ESAs and universal education freedom programs this year. Leaders and policymakers in the Grand Canyon State should embrace this moment and protect Arizona’s transformative ESA program. It’s not only the right thing to do, it’s popular.