Trump has distorted Biden’s position on education. Biden wants to end voucher programs and opposes for-profit and low-performing charter schools.
President Donald Trump has repeatedly claimed that Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden wants to "end school choice" and "abolish charter schools." Trump reiterated these claims during his acceptance speech during the Republican National Convention at the White House. However, this is not true.
Biden opposes federal funding going to "for-profit charter schools," but schools managed by for-profit companies make up only a fraction of charter schools. And while Biden opposes vouchers for private school tuition, he does not oppose students choosing between public schools, magnet schools, and high-performing charter schools. Biden is likely referring to those Education Management Organizations, or EMOs, which are for-profit entities hired to manage charter schools, according to Factcheck.org. EMOs "support public charter schools by providing them back-office services, teacher training, curriculum help, or other management related services. As charter schools are typically free to contract with both non-profit and for-profit organizations for goods and services, some choose to contract with for-profit organizations." However, the current percentage of schools contracting with EMOs is about 10%.
EdChoice, an advocacy group, lists several practices that fall under school choice. In addition to vouchers, that list includes charter schools, specialized magnet schools, and allowing students to choose which public school they want to attend. Biden's plans include all practices except vouchers. When Trump says Biden opposes school choice, he indeed opposes vouchers for private schools. But not everyone defines school choice that way. Trump supports letting students take federal funds to private schools, something Joe Biden and many Democrats oppose, instead of supporting allowing families to make choices within publicly-funded school districts. Therefore, Biden does not want to end school choice; he wants to end voucher programs that use public money to pay for private school tuition.
The 2020 Democratic platform was tougher on charters than the 2012 and 2016 platforms, but it shows that Biden has no intention of closing all charter schools.