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January 23, 2004

School vouchers

School vouchers are like those annoying pop up ads on the Internet: They won't go away. This time they showed up as part of a massive spending bill approved by the Senate.

It's the first time federal cash will pay for kids to go to private schools. This so-called experiment is taking place in Washington D.C. where public schools are notoriously bad.

The thing that bugs me most about voucher programs is the ridiculous suggestion that sending kids to private schools will somehow fix crummy public schools. I guarantee taking 1,700 kids (and their per-student funding) out of the cash-strapped, low-performing D.C. schools isn't going to make the district any better. Look at Cleveland or Milwaukee, where they've had voucher programs for years. I hope D.C. is aiming a bit higher than that.

Voucher proponents don't really want to fix public schools. They want to ditch them.

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Posted by Susan Byrnes at January 23, 2004 03:37 PM



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