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View Full Version : Problem I have with the voucher idea



Wibbins
05-12-2012, 11:40 AM
Wouldn't the school vouchers be the exact same thing that happened with student loans and the government backing them? I mean, if the government promised to pay whoever received the voucher, wouldn't that make corrupt schools start raising the cost because it's basically a sure thing? I've been worrying about this for some time now and honestly it's making me not want the voucher program, but rather a complete overhaul of the education system.

Odysseus
05-12-2012, 01:34 PM
Wouldn't the school vouchers be the exact same thing that happened with student loans and the government backing them? I mean, if the government promised to pay whoever received the voucher, wouldn't that make corrupt schools start raising the cost because it's basically a sure thing? I've been worrying about this for some time now and honestly it's making me not want the voucher program, but rather a complete overhaul of the education system.

There are a number of issues regarding vouchers which should make conservatives pause. If you authorize government funds to go to private schools, then the government has to determine which schools it is willing to pay for, which means that those schools that want to accept vouchers will have to meet the standards set by the same education bureaucracy that drove parents out of the public school system. It has the potential to expand the scope of government control of curricula to private schools, and to dictate other aspects of them, such as admissions (racial quotas and affirmative action in colleges are driven by the federal government's money, which can be withheld if a school fails to meet government standards in those areas).

The real solution is to privatize public schools, or at least charge tuition to those parents who put their kids in the system, and not charge it to those who don't. That would force the public schools to compete for students, rather than for tax dollars, which they receive no matter how badly they perform.

Novaheart
05-12-2012, 03:07 PM
Wouldn't the school vouchers be the exact same thing that happened with student loans and the government backing them? I mean, if the government promised to pay whoever received the voucher, wouldn't that make corrupt schools start raising the cost because it's basically a sure thing? I've been worrying about this for some time now and honestly it's making me not want the voucher program, but rather a complete overhaul of the education system.

It's reasonable to assume that exclusive schools will up their tuition to remain exclusive. I don't see why that is relevant. We paid school taxes and paid tuition on top of school taxes so that my nephews and niece could go to Quaker and Episcopalian schools. If we had vouchers, then our voucher and our tuition would both go to the schools our kids were attending.

A big proponent of the voucher program are nonmainstream protestant churches and social movements which want to operate schools, but which don't have the reputation or perhaps the demographics to charge full freight. A voucher that is only 50% of the state expenditure per pupil would be sufficient for most such private schools to operate in an existing and paid for building such as a Sunday school or parish hall. IN Florida, some churches have purchased old motels which make really good classrooms.

The only point of problem I might see would be if vouchers would be available and payable to homeschool parents. While most homeschool parents are actually educating their children to state or national standards, many are teaching horsepoo or not teaching at all. I know a handful of parents in our homeschool association who aren't teaching their kid anything. They claim that his education is "self directed" or some such bullshit. One of these kids couldn't read until he was 8 years old. I don't know what difference that makes, but it seems bad.

Odysseus
05-12-2012, 04:59 PM
It's reasonable to assume that exclusive schools will up their tuition to remain exclusive. I don't see why that is relevant. We paid school taxes and paid tuition on top of school taxes so that my nephews and niece could go to Quaker and Episcopalian schools. If we had vouchers, then our voucher and our tuition would both go to the schools our kids were attending.

A big proponent of the voucher program are nonmainstream protestant churches and social movements which want to operate schools, but which don't have the reputation or perhaps the demographics to charge full freight. A voucher that is only 50% of the state expenditure per pupil would be sufficient for most such private schools to operate in an existing and paid for building such as a Sunday school or parish hall. IN Florida, some churches have purchased old motels which make really good classrooms.

The only point of problem I might see would be if vouchers would be available and payable to homeschool parents. While most homeschool parents are actually educating their children to state or national standards, many are teaching horsepoo or not teaching at all. I know a handful of parents in our homeschool association who aren't teaching their kid anything. They claim that his education is "self directed" or some such bullshit. One of these kids couldn't read until he was 8 years old. I don't know what difference that makes, but it seems bad.

Again, the point is missed. Homeschoolers wouldn't need or want vouchers. They educate their own kids, and generally don't incur much in the way of costs. The real problem is that private schools that accepted vouchers will eventually have to accept public school oversight, in order to avoid the kind of fraud that you are worried about. It's a much better solution to have all schools charge tuition, public and private, and then permit parents to choose where they send their own kids without any state input. If the public school is better than the private school, it will attract parents. If it isn't, then it won't, and it won't stay in business. Individual tuition also works as a cost-cutting measure, as schools that cannot have their budgets met by legislative fiat have an incentive to rein in costs that public schools lack. It would guarantee a greater percentage of spending on the classroom and substantially less on administration and bureaucracy.

Those who cannot afford tuition can be subsidized in other ways, or provide work in exchange for education, and if you really feel strongly about it, you can always subsidize them yourself via charity.

Apache
05-12-2012, 10:54 PM
Wouldn't the school vouchers be the exact same thing that happened with student loans and the government backing them? I mean, if the government promised to pay whoever received the voucher, wouldn't that make corrupt schools start raising the cost because it's basically a sure thing? I've been worrying about this for some time now and honestly it's making me not want the voucher program, but rather a complete overhaul of the education system.

Interesting... I've not thought of it that way really, but I do worry about the Fed sticking its nose into private schools.