Vice President Pence pitches President Trump's education plan at Philadelphia school

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- Stephanie and Janiyah Davis returned to Philadelphia in style on board Air Force Two with Vice President Mike Pence on Wednesday.

The Davis' arrived from Washington, where they attended President Trump's State of the Union address on Tuesday night.

During the speech, Trump announced that Janiyah is receiving what he calle an "opportunity scholarship" to attend the school of her choice.

On Wednesday, education secretary Betsy DeVos referenced that announcement as an example of the opportunities granted the students through school choice program during her speech this afternoon at Saint Francis Desales School in Southwest Philadelphia.

"Janiyah and her mother Stephanie were there because scholarships are working. They have changed the lives of many across the Commonwealth including, and especially, right here in Philadelphia," DeVos said.

The Vice President dove-tailed off those comments, reiterating what President Trump said on Tuesday about a plan to expand school choice programs saying.

"That will give 1 million more students the freedom to attend the school of their choice and we are going to fight to make it a reality," said Pence.

Many parents we spoke with here at the school support plans that offer more students access to schools their choice.

But there were others who believe public school funding should be used to improve public schools.

Sandra Goddard, who has two children at St. Francis DeSales, says, "Yes, we have school choice and yes, there's going to be more money but if we have quality education in the state of Pennsylvania my children wouldn't have to be making the choices I have to make as a parent."

That same belief was part of what motivated a very vocal group of protesters outside the school.

Protester Meryl Gladstone says, "Rather than trying to offer choice, and to take students out of public schools, and to take funding from public schools, I think we have got to find a way to do justice for all of our students."

There was also a group of Trump supporters in the crowd as well.

It is also important to mention that this was Mike Pence's 5th visit to Pennsylvania over the past 13 months. It's an indication of just how important Pennsylvania is in the coming election.
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