8 Reasons Why School Vouchers Are A Very Bad Idea

“School choice” is a common term you hear from corporate privatizers and right-wing politicians. By “choice,” they usually mean taking money out of public schools to fund and send students to schools that are privately run, often by religious groups. This week, Jan. 26 to Feb. 1, is National School Choice Week, sponsored by ALEC, FreedomWorks, the Heritage Foundation, Michelle Rhee’s StudentsFirst and other groups. In honor of this weeklong celebration, here are a few examples of why school vouchers are bad policy:

1. Are voucher schools safe?

A federal audit of the Washington, D.C., voucher program found an alarming lack of controls to ensure that the buildings were safe.

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2. They teach pretty nutty things

The magazine Mother Jones published a shocking list of things children may be learning at voucher schools in Louisiana, including that humans and dinosaurs lived together. That’s off by about 60 million years.

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3. Students underperform

In both Louisiana and Wisconsin, students who attended schools on vouchers performed below the state average on tests. Why would we drain public schools to send students to schools that perform poorly?

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4. Where’s the money?

In Milwaukee, a voucher school abruptly closed after collecting $200,000 from taxpayers.

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5. Discrimination

Some schools that receive public funds through vouchers can discriminate against gay students and fire a teacher for being gay. Not to mention the schools that give pregnancy tests to students.

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6. Science is real

ALEC has model bills, which have been proposed in several states, that allow for the teaching of climate change denial. And one voucher school explained to the New York Times that it teaches kids that science is a “fallacy.”

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7. Segregation

In Louisiana, the Department of Justice had to sue because the voucher program may have violated desegregation orders.

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Vouchers are a bad idea.

To stay updated on vouchers be sure to check out VoucherFail.Tumblr.Com

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