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Should Liberals Embrace School Choice? Vouchers?

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  • Should Liberals Embrace School Choice? Vouchers?

    In the "Privilege" thread, there seems to be a lot of concern about "fairness".

    It was pointed out, for example, that the liberals pretty much control the education system in this country. (is that in dispute?)

    If the GOAL for liberals is to end "privilege", why not start with the public school system?
    Why not give parents a choice - by voucher or whatever - to send their kids to the best schools available, even if those are private schools?

    Why can't "pro-cholce" liberals be pro-choice about education?
    "Neighbor, how long has it been since you’ve had a big, thick, steaming bowl of Wolf Brand Chili?”

  • #2
    So, I'm looking at this on liberal websites - seeing what their rationale for opposing school choice would be.

    This from Salon.

    But there are a few serious problems with the school choice movement. Though it attracts mainstream conservatives like Cosby, as well as Democrats like President Barack Obama, it is not, at its core, a bipartisan endeavor. Its most important backers are rightwing organizations like the Heritage Foundation, Americans for Prosperity and other groups supported by billionaire rightwing ideologues like the Koch brothers. They want to dismantle public education altogether and run schools as businesses, judged as “successes” or “failures” based on abstract data taken from high-stakes standardized test scores.

    Access to opportunity is replaced with demands for universal “excellence” and “achievement,” in which teachers are punished for student “failure.” This pits parents against teachers, and it ultimately sidelines already marginalized children of immigrant families, poor children and/or children of color.


    I find these points interesting:
    They want to dismantle public education altogether

    I think that's a bit extreme to say "they want to dismantle public education altogether" -- that sounds like fearmongering.... personally, most people I know who are for school choice don't really give a flying flip what happens to the public schools that don't excel - we just want an alternative.
    and run schools as businesses, judged as “successes” or “failures” based on abstract data taken from high-stakes standardized test scores.

    Um.... I just want kids to be able to read and do arithmetic and be able to spell and fill out a job application and be able to balance a checkbook.... "high-takes standardized test scores"????
    This pits parents against teachers

    If a teacher is not teaching, they need to find something else to do. And the teacher's unions need to stop protecting those who misbehave.
    and it ultimately sidelines already marginalized children of immigrant families, poor children and/or children of color.

    Not sure how it does that, except that a lot of the "good" teachers would gravitate from poorly performing schools and want to work in schools where they were actually allowed to teach and "be teachers".
    "Neighbor, how long has it been since you’ve had a big, thick, steaming bowl of Wolf Brand Chili?”

    Comment


    • #3
      Apparently, the article I cited refers heavily to the opinions and observations of Brian Jones, "a New York City teacher and activist with the Grassroots Education Movement".

      I went to that website and found a list of the "reforms" they're pushing. I'm particularly interested in #10.

      Reform #1: Smaller Class Sizes
      Reform #2: Excellent Community Public Schools for ALL Children
      Reform #3: More Teaching – Less Testing
      Reform #4: Parent and Teacher Empowerment and Leadership
      Reform #5: Equitable Funding for ALL Schools
      Reform #6: Anti-Racist Education Policies
      Reform #7: Culturally Relevant Curriculum
      Real Reform #8: Expand Pre Kindergarten and Early Intervention Programs
      Real Reform #9: Qualified and Experienced Educators and Educational Leaders
      Real Reform #10: Democratic and Social Justice Unionism

      While these things might all sound good, they're basically, in my opinion, mainly focused on the goals of teacher's unions and progressive objectives. Not necessarily "better education".
      "Neighbor, how long has it been since you’ve had a big, thick, steaming bowl of Wolf Brand Chili?”

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by Cow Poke View Post
        Apparently, the article I cited refers heavily to the opinions and observations of Brian Jones, "a New York City teacher and activist with the Grassroots Education Movement".

        I went to that website and found a list of the "reforms" they're pushing. I'm particularly interested in #10.

        Reform #1: Smaller Class Sizes
        Reform #2: Excellent Community Public Schools for ALL Children
        Reform #3: More Teaching – Less Testing
        Reform #4: Parent and Teacher Empowerment and Leadership
        Reform #5: Equitable Funding for ALL Schools
        Reform #6: Anti-Racist Education Policies
        Reform #7: Culturally Relevant Curriculum
        Real Reform #8: Expand Pre Kindergarten and Early Intervention Programs
        Real Reform #9: Qualified and Experienced Educators and Educational Leaders
        Real Reform #10: Democratic and Social Justice Unionism

        While these things might all sound good, they're basically, in my opinion, mainly focused on the goals of teacher's unions and progressive objectives. Not necessarily "better education".
        I don't see anything mentioned about doing something to improve the actual education that the students are getting.

        I'm always still in trouble again

        "You're by far the worst poster on TWeb" and "TWeb's biggest liar" --starlight (the guy who says Stalin was a right-winger)
        "Of course, human life begins at fertilization that’s not the argument." --Tassman

        Comment


        • #5
          I have no problem with a voucher system for private schools if they are not affiliated with a religion, and meet the same standards and Curriculum as public schools. I believe in the separation of church and state. There are a few Military boarding schools left that would warrant vouchers, particularly for low income students.

          The current law for a voucher system in North Carolina is before the State Supreme Court. Lower courts have ruled it unconstitutional. One of the problems is that the law does not require the private schools to meet uniform sate standards, and certification of teachers.

          I agree with rogue06, we need to improve the public school system so that all public schools meet high standards. At present many public schools in poorer areas are not equal to the schools in better off neighborhoods.
          Glendower: I can call spirits from the vasty deep.
          Hotspur: Why, so can I, or so can any man;
          But will they come when you do call for them? Shakespeare’s Henry IV, Part 1, Act III:

          go with the flow the river knows . . .

          Frank

          I do not know, therefore everything is in pencil.

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by Cow Poke View Post
            Apparently, the article I cited refers heavily to the opinions and observations of Brian Jones, "a New York City teacher and activist with the Grassroots Education Movement".

            I went to that website and found a list of the "reforms" they're pushing. I'm particularly interested in #10.

            Reform #1: Smaller Class Sizes
            Reform #2: Excellent Community Public Schools for ALL Children
            Reform #3: More Teaching – Less Testing
            Reform #4: Parent and Teacher Empowerment and Leadership
            Reform #5: Equitable Funding for ALL Schools
            Reform #6: Anti-Racist Education Policies
            Reform #7: Culturally Relevant Curriculum
            Real Reform #8: Expand Pre Kindergarten and Early Intervention Programs
            Real Reform #9: Qualified and Experienced Educators and Educational Leaders
            Real Reform #10: Democratic and Social Justice Unionism

            While these things might all sound good, they're basically, in my opinion, mainly focused on the goals of teacher's unions and progressive objectives. Not necessarily "better education".
            GREAT GOALS!!!!! I overwhelmingly support these goals.
            Glendower: I can call spirits from the vasty deep.
            Hotspur: Why, so can I, or so can any man;
            But will they come when you do call for them? Shakespeare’s Henry IV, Part 1, Act III:

            go with the flow the river knows . . .

            Frank

            I do not know, therefore everything is in pencil.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by rogue06 View Post
              I don't see anything mentioned about doing something to improve the actual education that the students are getting.
              Exactly - it's all about "we run the system - leave us alone".
              "Neighbor, how long has it been since you’ve had a big, thick, steaming bowl of Wolf Brand Chili?”

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by shunyadragon View Post
                GREAT GOALS!!!!! I overwhelmingly support these goals.
                I am shocked. SHOCKED, I say.
                "Neighbor, how long has it been since you’ve had a big, thick, steaming bowl of Wolf Brand Chili?”

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by shunyadragon View Post
                  I have no problem with a voucher system for private schools if they are not affiliated with a religion,
                  Even though some of our finest schools used to be run by "religion".

                  and meet the same standards and Curriculum as public schools.
                  So much for "choice".

                  I believe in the separation of church and state.
                  Including the part of the first amendment that says "or prohibiting the free exercise thereof"?
                  "Neighbor, how long has it been since you’ve had a big, thick, steaming bowl of Wolf Brand Chili?”

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Cow Poke View Post
                    Including the part of the first amendment that says "or prohibiting the free exercise thereof"?
                    Not to mention that the so called separation of church and state as is practiced in modern times is not what the constitutional congress was thinking of when they wrote the first amendment.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by shunyadragon View Post
                      I have no problem with a voucher system for private schools if they are not affiliated with a religion,
                      So, why should I be discriminated against simply because I believe in God? I thought you were AGAINST discrimination. I pay taxes, and everybody else is free to choose to send their kids to a non-religious school. Why should I be prevented from spending my voucher money the way I deem best?
                      "Neighbor, how long has it been since you’ve had a big, thick, steaming bowl of Wolf Brand Chili?”

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Cow Poke View Post
                        So, why should I be discriminated against simply because I believe in God? I thought you were AGAINST discrimination. I pay taxes, and everybody else is free to choose to send their kids to a non-religious school. Why should I be prevented from spending my voucher money the way I deem best?
                        You are not being discriminated against. The separation of church and state is a principal that opposes the use of tax dollars to be used to support religious schools. Religious schools teach a religious classes, which would mean my tax dollars would be used to support a religion I do not believe in.
                        Last edited by shunyadragon; 06-02-2015, 01:50 PM.
                        Glendower: I can call spirits from the vasty deep.
                        Hotspur: Why, so can I, or so can any man;
                        But will they come when you do call for them? Shakespeare’s Henry IV, Part 1, Act III:

                        go with the flow the river knows . . .

                        Frank

                        I do not know, therefore everything is in pencil.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by shunyadragon View Post
                          You are not being discriminated against. The separation of church and state is a principal that opposes the use of tax dollars to be used to support religious schools.
                          So, you're perfectly fine with the government taking money from me and prohibiting my free expression of religion by spending it at a Christian school?
                          "Neighbor, how long has it been since you’ve had a big, thick, steaming bowl of Wolf Brand Chili?”

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by shunyadragon View Post
                            You are not being discriminated against. The separation of church and state is a principal that opposes the use of tax dollars to be used to support religious schools.
                            So, how bout a tax credit, Frank? I give to charitable organizations for which I get a tax credit. Basically, I'm supporting, in my case, religious institutions. So, I get a tax break for sending my kids to a Christian school.

                            Problem?
                            "Neighbor, how long has it been since you’ve had a big, thick, steaming bowl of Wolf Brand Chili?”

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Cow Poke View Post
                              So, you're perfectly fine with the government taking money from me and prohibiting my free expression of religion by spending it at a Christian school?
                              It is not a matter of freedom of expression. You are free to worship as you choose, and send your students to the school of your choice, but the separation of church and state prevents the use of public funds to support religious institutions. Religious schools teach a religious classes, which would mean my tax dollars would be used to support a religion I do not believe in.
                              Last edited by shunyadragon; 06-02-2015, 01:52 PM.
                              Glendower: I can call spirits from the vasty deep.
                              Hotspur: Why, so can I, or so can any man;
                              But will they come when you do call for them? Shakespeare’s Henry IV, Part 1, Act III:

                              go with the flow the river knows . . .

                              Frank

                              I do not know, therefore everything is in pencil.

                              Comment

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