Jonathan Zimmerman states that Mitt Romney’s education plan would “allow students to enroll in better schools outside their own district,” and that, “for the first time, a major political candidate has suggested that kids in a poor public school district should be allowed to enroll in a wealthier one.” This “radical” vision is already a reality.
In California, charter schools are required by law to accept students from anywhere in the state. If the schools have more applicants than space, they are required to hold an admissions lottery, whereby everyone who applies has an equal chance of getting admitted.
President Obama recognizes the great potential of charter schools to save the concept of public education — instead of giving in to the so-called radical vision of Romney to use vouchers, which is really just a way for the conservatives to privatize public schools.
David J. Eagle
The writer is founder of New West Charter School.
Romney’s a radical for allowing parents to choose public schools away from home? He has received criticism from the very liberals who were so in love with busing L.A. students far from home to achieve racial integration.
And as for other voucher haters, America has a very successful national voucher system; it’s called college. Students can attend cheaper state universities or more expensive private schools using the G.I. Bill, government loans or Pell Grants, with none of the supposed horrors coming true.
Since no liberal has suggested restricting government loans to Harvard or Stanford, I can only assume their objections are based on purely partisan prejudice, or lack of logic or, like Zimmerman’s, a very short memory.
Here’s the problem with voucher plans: If a school does not have enough space to accommodate children with vouchers, those vouchers are worthless. Romney’s idea makes him look good, but with limited spaces available at those “good schools,” his vision has little substance.