Private School Vouchers Are the Fool's Gold of Better Education

As a parent who, just this year, pulled his two youngest kids from private schools, I appreciate the rationale behind the relentless push for school vouchers.We all like to have choices.Good choices, that is.In theory, it makes perfect sense for parents like me who are shelling out thousands of dollars each year in local property taxes to get something in return — a rebate, if you will — if our local public school isn't up to par or if we simply prefer a different educational model.But, as a practical matter, I'm afraid that siphoning taxpayer money from traditional public schools in the name of "school choice" — an idea championed by Gov. Greg Abbott, Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick and our new federal secretary of education, Betsy DeVos — could have a terrible effect on public education as we know it.Those who stand to lose the most — poor, working-class families whose vouchers won't be nearly enough to cover the freight of a top-notch alternative — indeed will.They will be left behind in underfunded and abandoned educational hubs of socioeconomic distress.They will be left behind in a bifurcated educational system divided increasingly by income, religion and race, putting elitist expectations on an irreversible collision course with the centuries-old, egalitarian principles of public education.  Continue reading...

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