October 6, 2023
The Heritage Foundation published a Factsheet titled School Choice Policies Do Not Raise Private School Tuition.
In it they claim:
Over the past 10 years, states that never had a school choice policy had higher rates of tuition increases than states that had adopted school choice policy….
Among states that adopted school choice, inflation-adjusted tuition rates decreased, on average, after the adoption of school choice.
But Heritage made a critical mistake in their analysis: They used data from the 2013-2014 through 2022-2023 school years to predict private school tuition inflation going forward.
The problem is that there has been a substantial change since that data was gathered. In School Choice states, government money has been flowing into private schools under Universal School Choice programs since partway through the 2022-2023 school year.
One cannot predict events going forward using dissimilar data from the past. It is like trying to forecast winter weather using summer data.
Never before have private schools in America faced the prospect of receiving such massive income from the government. Never before have private schools been able to depend on that government money in their budgets. Never before have private schools publicly declared they would be raising their tuition because of available government money.
The new government money inflow has substantially changed the underlying forces on private schools.
The Heritage Foundation cannot justify their claims about private school tuition using their obsolete data. They have no basis in data to claim that School Choice policies do not raise private school tuition.