The best. It’s what we want for our children, summarized in two simple words. The best of what, you may ask? Well, the best of everything is the answer. Good parents strive to provide the best they possibly can for their children. Some are in a better position to do so than others, and understandably so. However, should this disparity be acceptable when it comes to education?
Across the United States, millions of children are forced to attend schools that are of poor quality and that fail to meet their learning needs. Inferior education places these children at a disadvantage for obtaining their best possible future, at no fault of their own. Educational excellence should be possible for all children.
For decades, the public school system has monopolized education. The problem with a monopoly in education is no different than it is with any other type of monopoly. Monopolies create an inefficient allocation of resources. They attempt to prevent potential providers of the same or similar products and services from entering the competition. This has been the case in the quest for school choice.
The official mission of the U.S. Department of Education, as stated on its website, is to promote student achievement and preparation for global competitiveness by fostering educational excellence and ensuring equal access. Private school choice legislation was passed in 16 states in 2013.
School choice programs vary, generally by state. Types of school choice programs include:
- school vouchers
- scholarship tax credits
- education savings accounts
- public charter schools
John T. Walton said it best when he stated, “There is a growing acceptance and interest in publicly funded school choice as a catalyst for education reform in general and a way to empower parents to be education reformers.” Consequences accompany choices; and with school choice, those consequences benefit our children.