Tuesday, May 31, 2005

School

I am frequently questioned on my stance on choice in schools, especially as I am working towards teaching certification presently. The facts of the matter, though, firmly prove that the present centralized system of schooling only creates government waste and inefficiency in schools. Cato's David Salisbury writes on the gains realized by other countries by opening up school choice here.

Even a conceptual understanding of the situation is enough to see where the problem lies; without any competition, schools have no real reason to perform any better. Parents, when able to choose a school for their child, base their decision off of a variety of factors, including the school's graduation record and reputation, the distance away from their home, the other students attending the school, and the content taught in the classes, among other things. If given choice, schools will be able to specialize and stop trying to please everyone at once; instead, parents will send their child to a school that will teach them what they, the parents, want their children to learn. Furthermore, the schools will have to compete to run the best school possible at the lowest expense.

An interesting fact about President Bush's No Child Left Behind act (NCLB): A New Hampshire study showed that while it would take approximately $515 per student to make the changes required by NCLB, the federal government would only be funding them $77 per student for making said changes.

Where is the problem here? Is there some significant issue that is facing law makers that I don't see that causes them to support our current inefficient system? Is there perhaps some other force that I've not accounted for? Is there any reason to maintain a system of education as we have now?

2 Comments:

Blogger veggiedude said...

The "leave no child behind" slogan is an interesting notion, but maybe more for the romantic than the pragmatic. It suggests that all children can be taught at relatively the same level and at the same pace. If only reality was so, um, er, I dunno, more realistic?

11:30 PM  
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