Keep virtual school choice an option

Originally published in Wisconsin State Journal – January 11, 2021

Even before the pandemic, my wife and I were considering a switch to an online school for our children. Now, COVID-19 is proving that school choice is more important than ever.

My son, Sterling, who is exceptional at math and science, wasn’t being challenged enough in a traditional school. When classes moved online, it became apparent that the teachers weren’t familiar with teaching virtually. And when Sterling was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes in May, safety became an ultimate priority.

That’s why we decided to make the switch to Wisconsin Virtual Academy, a school that’s designed to be virtual, instead of having to quickly adapt during a global health crisis. They are better equipped to keep my children engaged and learning, all while staying safe in an environment where I can closely monitor their wellbeing.

I possess a doctorate in higher education, so I have myriad thoughts and theories when it comes to education. But when it comes to my kids, my job is not only to ensure they have a quality education, but that they’re happy and healthy, too.

School choice has made that possible for our family, and that’s why we must protect this option for all.

John D.P. Howard

To learn more about Wisconsin Virtual Academy, visit

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