- How is it legal to funnel tax dollars for education to private schools, especially if they are religious in scope?
- Would all religious schools be eligible?
- What if the private schools don't do Common Core or state tests?
- How can private schools really serve children in poverty if the scholarship does not cover other private school expenses such as food, books, uniforms and extra curricular fees?
- Do these scholarships give access to any child that would like to try private school, such as English language learners or the disabled?
- How do equitable scholarships align with private school's selective admission and exclusionary practices?
- Will private schools group students by ability to remediate students who are behind grade level, perpetuating the isolation from private school peers?
- How will vouchers really change the limited choices of low-income families who cannot drive their children to school?
- Does attending a private school really close the achievement gap?
- Do parents understand that private school is not like public school, held accountable to tax payers?
- Have private schools really studied the impact vouchers will have on their student populations and potential government oversight?
- If I am in a rural community with no private schools why should I care about vouchers? And why should my taxes go to pay for urban kids to attend private school?
- Why are vouchers so important that the Walton Foundation would give $6 million dollars to a lobbying group called Alliance for School Choice to convince Tennessee they need vouchers? What do the Walton's get when they buy in to change our State's laws?
- Will private schools use standardized test to show they are providing value and prove they are making student progress?
- As money follows the child and tuition increases, will our tax burden increase to pay for private school services?
Up to this point, two pro-voucher camps exist. One that sees vouchers are a way to allow kids in poverty access to private school education through voucher scholarships. And another sees it as the ultimate school choice to take appointed education tax dollars as a tax credit and use it to close the financial gap that excludes middle class families' access to private education. On the surface, this is an interesting idea. But, as we dig deeper the voucher proposal looks troubling and brings more questions than solutions.
If our state is truly providing quality public education, as mandated by our constitution, we do not need these schemes to funnel education dollars away from public schools. And if our state is not providing an adequate public education system then they should be held accountable to deliver an education system that works for all children. Not just for those who can choose.
Just say what vouchers really are: affluent welfare engineered to drain our public schools of capable students and engaged families...further isolating the most vulnerable children in our society. Vouchers are a cop-out to avoid truly providing access to quality public education for all children.
Voucher failure in the other states that have vouchers:
Indiana: Voucher & charter school results are worse than public schools. The "results should undercut the argument that we need charter schools and vouchers so children can “escape” failing public schools." (Click HERE to read more)
Louisiana: Nearly half of Louisiana's voucher students attend D or F rated schools (Click HERE to read the facts) Some have learned how to "game" the system in Louisiana (Click HERE to read about the fraud)
Wisconsin: After more than 20 years of vouchers, the voucher schools have performed the same or worse than public schools. (Click HERE to read the article) "Two thirds of Milwaukee students using the voucher program in the city already attended private schools. Instead of increasing mobility for low-income students, the program primarily served to perpetuate status quo." (Click HERE to read another article).
North Carolina: A Christian voucher school will not admit students who are gay or who come from gay families. Is this even legal? (Click HERE to read)
Washington D.C.: According to an investigation by the U.S. General Accounting Office: D.C. voucher program is riddled with problems, lacking oversight to ensure participating private schools are physically safe or academically accredited. (Click HERE to read the report)
Sneaky, sneaky: Click HERE to read how vouchers get a foothold in states by claiming to be for the poorest students, but the movement continually pushes toward its goal of a universal voucher system, and consequentially strangles what were once strong public school districts.
Cha-ching: Click HERE to see how much $$$ is being poured into Tennessee to make our state the next voucher victim state.
Gallup poll: 70% of Americans oppose the use of public funds for religious or private schools. No voucher program has EVER been endorsed by voters. (Click HERE to read those important facts)