View Poll Results: Do you support school choice?

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  • Yes

    69 67.65%
  • Yes but with certain exceptions. (Please list those exceptions.)

    16 15.69%
  • No, students should only go to schools in their public school district.

    4 3.92%
  • other

    10 9.80%
  • I do not know

    3 2.94%
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Thread: Do you support school choice?

  1. #541
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    Re: Do you support school choice?

    Quote Originally Posted by maquiscat View Post
    Not necessarily. There are studies that show that some of the "bad" kids are not getting enough challenge and stimulation in public school. They act out because they are bored. When put into private, magnet, or charter schools, their performance improves greatly. There is indeed a portion of the school population (speaking as a country in general) that are suffering from an educational problem. Now if you get a kid that has to keep moving from school to school because they are always acting out, then you most likely have a social problem. But it seems that you would deny those with the education problem a change at a good education.
    I was one of those type of "bad" kids but my grades never suffered. Being bored and unchallenged did cause behavioral problems but not academic problems. The answer was to transfer me to an AT (Advanced Teaching) class, which was held in another school in the same district. That whole school wasn't AT, just a few classes, one for each grade from 4-7. There were several such schools scattered around the district. Most districts follow the same route today, providing advanced classes for advanced students. Even our inner-city schools have this program and a whole high-school (out of 10? I think) devoted to it.


    Quote Originally Posted by maquiscat View Post
    So what happens went a large number of families, each with 1-4 children, move into the school district? Are they turned away once those few dozen temporary openings fill up? You also seem to have a false and unspoken assumption that simple because Student A left School 1 for School 2 means that all students want to go to School 2. It can just as easily be that School 1 is a better fit for Student B, who is leaving School 2.
    For starters, each large subdivision - where those "large number of families" will live - is required to provide space for an elementary school and sometimes to help build one. The middle schools and high schools in my district were over-crowded for over a decade before we got the money to build a new high-school/middle school complex, and we threw in an elementary school, too, because it was cost-effective. That doesn't mean I want kids from outside the district adding to or creating an over-crowding situation.


    As for your two-students-switch-places scenario, I suspect those will be very few and far between. I'm not saying it won't happen but it's hardly a point for your case.


    Quote Originally Posted by maquiscat View Post
    So wait, are you saying that the richer district schools are getting more money? Hmmm...could that possibly be part of the problem?
    By definition a "richer" school district gets more money - or you'd better define exactly what you mean by "richer". Our districts vote on the property tax rate for education, so that value will vary from district to district. But I'll say it again, the problems we (all) have with inner-city schools isn't an educational problem or a money problem, it's a social problem. If you can't fix the social problems or at least alleviate the more glaring issues, then children in those areas will never get a good education regardless of what school they attend.
    Last edited by MoSurveyor; 02-07-14 at 07:38 AM.
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  2. #542
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    Re: Do you support school choice?

    Quote Originally Posted by AlbqOwl View Post
    I have no problem with a general federal data gathering agency--I don't think you would need one devoted strictly for education--but I would see such data gathering agency as being in the interest of the general welfare. It could provide easy objective and unbiased access to information for those of us who plan to locate to know what the taxes, cost of living, average wages, quality of schools etc. are in a new area. Local school boards could access the data base to see how their schools are stacking up against others, what the tuition is and entrance requirements are for colleges across the country so that local curricula could be designed for students to qualify.

    But any federal influence over the education process itself I see as inappropriate federal meddling that should just not exist.
    IMO, fed education doesn't need to be it's own department but I do think, because of the specifics of education you'd need an entire office devoted to just gathering and disseminating educational information. I'm also curious how you feel about fed R&D for education. Just like any other institution, education needs investigation to make the system better. You can't count on industry/business to do the basic studies needed for advancement.

    I still believe the fed should publish an educational standard whether it's a requirement or not.
    Mt. Rushmore: Three surveyors and some other guy.
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  3. #543
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    Re: Do you support school choice?

    Quote Originally Posted by mac View Post
    There is a private school right down the street, A National Blue Ribbon school, that only takes special needs and learning disabled students. They are the kids that private schools "choose not to take." They're doing pretty well. :Shrug:
    That's not what I've been talking about. I think you have me confused with someone else in this discussion. But to address your comment in relation to what I have been discussing ...


    There's a big difference between "special needs and learning disabled students" (in the non-PC vernacular, "handicapped" or "suffering from a specific disease or other physical condition") and students that have (psychological) behavioral problems and/or no home support to speak of. It's the latter problems I see as the major issue in our inner-city schools and it's a social issue that no school can resolve. Pretending that vouchers "will make things all better" for the majority, or even a large minority, of students is BS.
    Last edited by MoSurveyor; 02-07-14 at 08:19 AM.
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    Hear the echoes of the centuries, Power isn't all that money buys. -Peart
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  4. #544
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    Re: Do you support school choice?

    Quote Originally Posted by mac View Post
    By the way, had you attended a private school...you probably would have spelled orange correctly. Just sayin'.
    Assuming it's not just a typo that *some* people use as an attack on intelligence. I'm sure those same people have 60 WPM, 0 error typing skills.
    Mt. Rushmore: Three surveyors and some other guy.
    Life goes on within you and without you. -Harrison
    Hear the echoes of the centuries, Power isn't all that money buys. -Peart
    After you learn quantum mechanics you're never really the same again. -Weinberg

  5. #545
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    Re: Do you support school choice?

    Quote Originally Posted by MoSurveyor View Post
    IMO, fed education doesn't need to be it's own department but I do think, because of the specifics of education you'd need an entire office devoted to just gathering and disseminating educational information. I'm also curious how you feel about fed R&D for education. Just like any other institution, education needs investigation to make the system better. You can't count on industry/business to do the basic studies needed for advancement.

    I still believe the fed should publish an educational standard whether it's a requirement or not.
    With a few exceptions related to national defense and security, the federal government is not the entity that should be doing R&D in anything. The private and state universities, put back on their own and stripped of all federal meddling, are the proper venue for educational research.

    And to devote an entire government agency to gathering and dispensing information on education would be a waste of government resources and a waste of taxpayer money. Much better to devote computing power and expertise to collect, collate, and put into usable and dispensable form the information sent to it by all the various educational institutions and other entities. I am pushing for a small, lean, efficient, effective, and honest federal government and that isn't accomplished by creating more and more bureaucracy.
    "I think the best way of doing good to the poor, is not making them easy in poverty, but leading or driving them out of it." --Benjamin Franklin 1776

  6. #546
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    Re: Do you support school choice?

    Quote Originally Posted by vesper View Post
    What I find troubling over several pages full of your posts is your lack of concern for the poor quality of education students are receiving in many classrooms across this country. You have all kinds of excuses for why you are against vouchers but NONE of them focus on the child. For your information, the beauty of vouchers has opened the door for schools to open up that deal specifically with learning disabilities and those with physical disabilities. They are actually saving Departments of Education a whole lot of money. For example, if a child has a physical disability, the school must provide means for that child to get to his classes. If the school has stairs, the school must install an elevator. It must also provide an aid that can help the child when he needs to use the restroom and possibly aid in helping with lunch. These things costs school districts/taxpayers a good amount of money. If the child has a learning disability, the school must provide an aid to assist the child in completing his work. Another expense that does not come cheap. Charter schools, however, that specialize in disability have facilities that are designed to accommodate these students. There are staff members on hand to aid these students in things like using the restroom to cafeteria that are provided through the tuition. They also have high tech computer labs to assist the student in completing his/her work without having to battle with their physical impairments which a lot of school districts can not afford.

    There's a big blowout occurring across this country how school districts have too dang many un-needed administrators collecting a fine wage and benefits. I know I am living in such a district. I also know there are such things as bad teachers and because of a thing called tenure and the teacher's union it takes a boatload of money and two years of litigation to get one removed.

    Now my state "OHIO" is probably the leader in breaking ground on vouchers as we have extended their use far beyond any other state and we have seen nothing but success from the program. We have seen graduation rates increased which means fewer children became statistics. We have scholarship programs for the disabled. We have scholarship programs those kids living in poor performing school districts to have an opportunity to attend a district that is providing excellence. Vouchers can be used to attend another public school if they have agreed to be part of the program. All scholarships to charter and public schools are handled through the Ohio Department of Education. The program is truly about the children NOT about the teachers, the administrators, or the unions.

    I advocate for making all public schools equally high quality. That should be the priority. I don't believe it is impossible and it has never really been tried in the USA in modern times because the families in prosperous school districts do not want to see the money used to make their schools superior shared with poorer communities. Issues with top heavy administrations and union rules that limit teacher accountability can be addressed without drastic measures such as the voucher scheme. I bet most of the people who expressed concerns about those issues on this forum never attend school board meetings, which are the best place to deal with those problems.

    The improvements touted for the voucher scheme will primarily go the least needy students because the greatest benefit will go the families that can use their own funds to supplement the voucher amount, allowing them to upgrade to a more expensive private school, or move from a good suburban school to an even better private one. which will drive up all private school prices. Children from poor families and other families with children considered "undesirable' because they came from families that do not speak English at home, the parents are not well educated, children with learning and behavioral problems and the disabled will be relegated to the remaining public schools which will be saddled with the most difficult students and have their funding decimated by the voucher scheme.

    The expenses you mentioned that are related to accommodating disabled students are why it is ridiculous to compare the performance of public schools with all those mandates to private schools which are free to refuse any student for any reason. Public schools are free to establish and fund charter schools serving special needs students without any need for a voucher system.

    Bottom line: I would never support an educational plan that primarily benefits prosperous families at the expense of the poor, which is exactly what vouchers will do. Supporting vouchers requires further reducing the quality of education for the most poor and vulnerable students to benefit the more fortunate ones.

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    Re: Do you support school choice?

    Quote Originally Posted by polgara View Post
    Very well stated, Vesper! I only had one example of a student who transferred to a charter school, but what I saw was enough to convince me that they're a great thing for students who are a little above average. He was bored, until he transferred to a charter school, where he was apparently challenged scholastically, and it made a huge difference in his attitude toward learning. He actually liked going to school, and became much happier, according to his mom.

    Greetings, Vesper.
    Establishing charter schools does not require vouchers.

  8. #548
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    Re: Do you support school choice?

    Quote Originally Posted by Hard Truth View Post
    I advocate for making all public schools equally high quality. That should be the priority. I don't believe it is impossible and it has never really been tried in the USA in modern times because the families in prosperous school districts do not want to see the money used to make their schools superior shared with poorer communities. Issues with top heavy administrations and union rules that limit teacher accountability can be addressed without drastic measures such as the voucher scheme. I bet most of the people who expressed concerns about those issues on this forum never attend school board meetings, which are the best place to deal with those problems.

    The improvements touted for the voucher scheme will primarily go the least needy students because the greatest benefit will go the families that can use their own funds to supplement the voucher amount, allowing them to upgrade to a more expensive private school, or move from a good suburban school to an even better private one. which will drive up all private school prices. Children from poor families and other families with children considered "undesirable' because they came from families that do not speak English at home, the parents are not well educated, children with learning and behavioral problems and the disabled will be relegated to the remaining public schools which will be saddled with the most difficult students and have their funding decimated by the voucher scheme.

    The expenses you mentioned that are related to accommodating disabled students are why it is ridiculous to compare the performance of public schools with all those mandates to private schools which are free to refuse any student for any reason. Public schools are free to establish and fund charter schools serving special needs students without any need for a voucher system.

    Bottom line: I would never support an educational plan that primarily benefits prosperous families at the expense of the poor, which is exactly what vouchers will do. Supporting vouchers requires further reducing the quality of education for the most poor and vulnerable students to benefit the more fortunate ones.
    Your fears are absolutely unfounded. In fact Ohio's scholarship programs proves them untrue. We have scholarship programs set up specifically for low income/working class. We have others set up specifically meeting needs due to location of poor performing school districts which often tends to be in poor neighborhoods. We have scholarships specifically for the learning disabled and physically disabled. This isn't about how much a child's parents make but everything to do with what the PARENT believes is best for THEIR child.

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    Re: Do you support school choice?

    Quote Originally Posted by vesper View Post
    Your fears are absolutely unfounded. In fact Ohio's scholarship programs proves them untrue. We have scholarship programs set up specifically for low income/working class. We have others set up specifically meeting needs due to location of poor performing school districts which often tends to be in poor neighborhoods. We have scholarships specifically for the learning disabled and physically disabled. This isn't about how much a child's parents make but everything to do with what the PARENT believes is best for THEIR child.
    Scholarships and specialized schools and programs for children with specialized needs are fine and are not dependent on the existence of vouchers, they exist in many states without a voucher scheme.

    Where do the scholarship funds come from? If they supplement the funding that previously went to public schools, then the benefit is from the new funding, not the voucher program. Again, specialized and/or charter schools or special programs can be established without vouchers.

  10. #550
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    Re: Do you support school choice?

    Quote Originally Posted by vesper View Post
    Your fears are absolutely unfounded. In fact Ohio's scholarship programs proves them untrue. We have scholarship programs set up specifically for low income/working class. We have others set up specifically meeting needs due to location of poor performing school districts which often tends to be in poor neighborhoods. We have scholarships specifically for the learning disabled and physically disabled. This isn't about how much a child's parents make but everything to do with what the PARENT believes is best for THEIR child.
    Exactly, and that is accomplished by issuing an equal amount of funding for each child, not each school, and then allow the schools to compete for those dollars. Hard Truth up there objects to vouchers because he thinks it would disadvantage the poorer students. But it wouldn't. It would put those poorer students on absolutely equal footing with everybody else so far as the public school system is concerned. And it would push failing schools to up their game to attract those students because if they can't attract them, then they don't get them. And that means they don't get the funding either.

    And it would allow the lower income families who could not otherwise afford the full tuition to a good parochial or private school more opportunity because they might be able to come up with the remainder of the tuition when the voucher did not cover it all.

    What those of us who are advocating school choice are advocating is to give the poor kids, the least advantaged kids, a shot at a better education. Those objecting to school choice are actually doing , however unintentionally, is sentencing those poor kids to never have any kind of chance to escape their failing schools.

    School choice is all about improving the schools as well as giving parents the ability to choose what is best for their children.
    Last edited by AlbqOwl; 02-07-14 at 04:51 PM.
    "I think the best way of doing good to the poor, is not making them easy in poverty, but leading or driving them out of it." --Benjamin Franklin 1776

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