While many of her fellow Democrats are mum, three-term Charlotte mayor Vi Lyles has issued a proclamation recognizing Jan. 22-28 as National School Choice Week in the Queen City.

The proclamation acknowledges that Charlotte is “home to a multitude of high-quality public and nonpublic schools from which parents can choose for their children, in addition to families who educate their children in the home,” and that “educational variety not only helps to diversify our economy, but also enhances the vibrancy of our community.”

According to recent statistics, 20,191 students in Mecklenburg County are enrolled in public charter schools, 19,516 are enrolled in private schools, and 11,429 are homeschooled.

Held every January, National School Choice Week is “the world’s largest celebration of opportunity in education,” according to the organization’s website. There are “867 educational events and activities in North Carolina planned by schools, homeschool organizations, parent groups, and educators.”

“Supporting school choice and generating awareness of the school choice is a way to put kids first when it comes to education”, said Andrew Campanella, president and CEO of the National School Choice Awareness Foundation. “Mayor Lyle’s proclamation recognizes the importance of options for families and reaffirms that all children should have access to the highest quality education possible.”

In 2022, Gov. Roy Cooper, also a Democrat, raised eyebrows across the political spectrum by issuing a statewide proclamation on National School Choice Week. The move was surprising because Cooper has made opposition to school choice — including publicly funded scholarship programs that help low- and moderate-income families choose a private school — a key part of his tenure as governor.