Donald Trump and Betsy DeVos believe that school choice is the best possible education ponies, including vouchers, charter schools, perhaps trade schools and home schooling. Maybe anyone who puts the word “School” on a building will get part of the bobanza.
Singer shows what is wrong with school choice. Here are four of his ten reasons why school choice is no choice. Open the post to see the links and read the other six:
“On the surface of it, school choice sounds like a great idea.
“Parents will get to shop for schools and pick the one that best suits their children.
“Oh! Look, Honey! This one has an exceptional music program! That one excels in math and science! The drama program at this one is first in the state!
“But that’s not at all what school choice actually is.
“In reality, it’s just a scam to make private schools cheaper for rich people, further erode the public school system and allow for-profit corporations to gobble up education dollars meant to help children succeed.
“1) Voucher programs almost never provide students with full tuition.
“Voucher programs are all the rage especially among conservatives. Legislation has been proposed throughout the country taking a portion of tax dollars that would normally go to a public school and allowing parents to put it toward tuition at a private or parochial school. However, the cost of going to these schools is much higher than going to public schools. So even with your tax dollars in hand, you don’t have the money to go to these schools. For the majority of impoverished students attending public schools, vouchers don’t help. Parents still have to find more money somewhere to make this happen. Poor folks just can’t afford it. But rich folks can so let’s reduce their bill!? They thank you for letting them buy another Ferrari with money that should have gone to give poor and middle class kids get an education.
“2) Charter and voucher schools don’t have to accept everyone
“When you choose to go to one of these schools, they don’t have to choose to accept you. In fact, the choice is really all up to them. Does your child make good grades? Is he or she well-behaved, in the special education program, learning disabled, etc.? If they don’t like your answers, they won’t accept you. They have all the power. It has nothing to do with providing a good education for your child. It’s all about whether your child will make them look good. By contrast, public schools take everyone and often achieve amazing results with the resources they have.
“3) Charter Schools are notorious for kicking out hard to teach students
“Charter schools like to tout how well they help kids learn. But they also like to brag that they accept diverse students. So they end up accepting lots of children with special needs at the beginning of the year and then giving them the boot before standardized test season. That way, these students’ low scores won’t count against the charter school’s record. They can keep bragging about their high test scores without actually having to expend all the time and energy of actually teaching difficult students. Only public schools take everyone and give everyone their all.
“4) Voucher and charter schools actually give parents less choice than traditional public schools
“Public schools are governed by different rules than charter and voucher schools. Most public schools are run by a school board made up of duly-elected members from the community. The school board is accountable to that community. Residents have the right to be present at votes and debates, have a right to access public documents about how tax money is being spent, etc. None of this is true at most charter or voucher schools. They are run by executive boards or committees that are not accountable to parents. If you don’t like what your public school is doing, you can organize, vote for new leadership or even take a leadership role, yourself. If you don’t like what your charter or voucher school is doing, your only choice is to withdraw your child. See ya.”