Views On Vouchers - Right Side

School choice keeps capable students from being hijacked by zip codes



Why isn't there free market choice with what school to send your children?

Freshly off our most recent election, aka Talking Points ’12, we heard a lot about freedom, liberty and the American Dream. If we could whittle those ideals down to one actionable value, it would have to be choice, but dang that devil in the details thing.

Which brings us to the question of how do we apply F.L.A.D. (see opening sentence) to readin’, writin’ ’n ’rithmetic? I can think of few things that demand an adherence to the liberty we so proudly cherish more than having a choice of where to educate our children. For it is through that education that our nation’s youth will have the best opportunity to support themselves and their families, all while bettering the country. To make this possible we should expand school choice and the availability of school vouchers.

Some people would like me to stand in the corner for saying that. These would be your teachers unions, which seem far more wedded to the institutions than they do to the individual student. Other naysayers would also be those who don’t understand the original intention of the Establishment Clause (more on that later) or those who see racial divisions in all decisions.

So let’s approach it from a less heated vantage point. If the grocery store closest to you stored its meat on the floor amidst rat droppings, much less bruised their cumquats, you’d likely be inclined to shop elsewhere, right? If the public park closest to you either had dated equipment or tailored to a seedy sort, you’d probably plan the family picnic at another park, correct? If the library branch just down the road didn’t have the collection or amenities that the one way across town did, where would you go? The point is, we put so much emphasis on choice and markets, but when it comes to our public schools, those are fighting words.