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Save the children

 
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Ned & Luz
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Joined: 02 May 2006
Posts: 4
Location: CT

PostPosted: Tue May 02, 2006 7:09 pm    Post subject: Save the children Reply with quote

It is sometimes said, by public school supporters, that if some children are taken out of the system to go to other schools, the public schools will deteriorate. And so, the thinking goes, parents have a “duty to society” to keep their kids in the public schools, even though they have already deteriorated almost beyond recognition. How absurd that the government schools think of the children as serving the schools’ or society’s needs instead of the other way around.

It’s not the school system that needs saving, or even reforming. It’s the children who need to escape from the failing government schools and be allowed to homeschool or attend successful private schools, without the penalty of paying twice -- once with taxes and again for tuition.

The real question is, do we want the best education we can get for our children, or do we merely want to maintain the government school monopoly, no matter how bad it gets or how much it costs? Contrary to the argument that’s sometimes heard, saving some children from bad schools does not doom the rest of them; it simply saves some. And that is obviously better, by whatever means is available, than saving none.

As long as schools are under the control of politicians and government bureaucrats, hand in hand with the teachers’ unions, the education will not be “healthy” because politics kills education. Government incentives prevent the needed reforms and innovations. Think of all the instruction in government schools that’s mandated by politicians because of pressure from various interest groups and campaign contributors. It takes up about half of every school day at the expense of what most parents expect from the schools -- core academics.

What’s wrong is that the government is not a proper agency for education. It thrives on its own failure -- the worse it does, the more money politicians give it. While state-run schools fail at high cost, private parent-directed and funded schools succeed at half the per-student cost. The problem is that government schools do not seek the same things that parents seek for their children. Government wants compliant predictable citizens; parents want independent thinking creative individuals. The two goals are not compatible.

Parents need the freedom to choose where their children will go to school, and that choice must include private and religious schools. No child should be forced to attend a bad school, and no one should be forced to pay ever-higher taxes to prop up a failing system.

Government is the problem in education, just as it is in other areas (medicine, welfare, etc.) and the private sector is the solution. State-run schools will not reform themselves, ever. Education, and the money that pays for it, needs to be put back into the hands of parents and removed from politics. Parents must have the right to spend their own money for the schooling they choose. End the failure. End the monopoly, End the corruption. End the blame game. Save the children.
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Theodore
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Joined: 06 Oct 2005
Posts: 2122
Location: Missouri, US

PostPosted: Tue May 02, 2006 7:48 pm    Post subject: Re: Save the children Reply with quote

A well-written post. To put it quite simply, the public schools have no real penalty for failure, therefore they can be as sloppy as they want without worrying about being shut down. An element of competition (and therefore, accountability to the general public) needs to be added if there's to be any hope of improving them.

Lobby for school vouchers! Things may get messy for a year or two while everyone reshuffles from bad schools to good schools, but the gains in the long run will be huge.
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Last edited by Theodore on Thu May 04, 2006 1:52 pm; edited 1 time in total
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momo3boys
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Joined: 14 Feb 2006
Posts: 574
Location: Western Mass

PostPosted: Thu May 04, 2006 1:50 pm    Post subject: MCAS Reply with quote

Massachusetts wanted to show people that they have good schools, but they chose to test the children instead of vouchers. We may have "good" schools now, but the children have suffered. One of the reasons I chose to homeschool is so that my children never have to take this test. The years that they are tested, they only learn how to pass the test, they aren't allowed the freedom to learn, they are under pressures to pass a test that show they are going to a "good" school. Vouchers are a much better way, that way the students aren't penalized. Hey maybe we can actually get a taz break for homeschooling!
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