Seriously? The Demise of Public Education in Arizona?

 

I’m writing this as I sit in a very crowded House Education Hearing room.  There are many bills being discussed today but the worst is the largest voucher expansion bill ever.  All students in Arizona would have a voucher. 

When you consider that 1 of 5 kids is living in poverty, parents cannot get their students to these private “public” schools while holding down jobs, and there is no accountability for how tax money is spent (into the pockets, homes, luxury cars of the owners of these schools), this makes absolutely no sense. 

80% of almost one million school age students attend traditional public schools. Why?  Because they have state-of-the-art teaching, they don’t nudge kids who don’t test well out on the 100th day, they don’t falsely label kids as profoundly special needs in order to collect more tax money, they DO TEACH ALL OF THE STUDENTS.  And they transport them to school and back, feed them one or two meals and meet the needs of every student with love, caring compassion. 

The majority of parents choose traditional public schools for their children, yet, their choice receives less state funding per student than the other two choices funded by the state “charter schools and ESAs.  This bill makes no sense. It is not sustainable.  Is it an undisguised bid to get rid of the most important aid to our Republic? 

As Franklin D. Roosevelt said, “Democracy cannot succeed unless those who express their choice are prepared to choose wisely. The real safeguard of democracy, therefore, is education.”

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