Add Republican New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie as a huge supporter of school choice. Here’s what he said on the matter in a speech to Harvard’s School of Education last week (Hat tip/Political Diary):
“It’s easy for the union members making four and five hundred thousand dollars a year sending their kids to some of the best schools in New Jersey to pontificate about how those [other] children should wait until the schools improve in their neighborhood.
“I have a daughter in the second grade right now, our youngest. She’s only got one year in the second grade. How long are we going to make her wait? To third or fourth or fifth? When she’s so far behind she has no hope of ever catching up.
“This is not a problem with an infinite time frame to fix. Every year we don’t fix it we’re losing more children. Irretrievable in many instances. So I’m for choice not as the solution to the problem in public schools but as a building block. I think we should forget about how a school starts and worry about how it performs.
“So whether it starts as a private school or as a parochial school, whether it starts as a charter school or a regular public school, let’s reward excellence. Let’s encourage excellence. Let’s fund excellence rather than just worrying about maintaining a system that looks almost exactly like it would when this country started.”