"I know no safe depository of the ultimate powers of the society but the people themselves; and if we think them not enlightened enough to exercise their control with a wholesome discretion, the remedy is not to take it from them, but to inform their discretion by education. This is the true corrective of abuses of constitutional power." - Thomas Jefferson 1820

"There is a growing technology of testing that permits us now to do in nanoseconds things that we shouldn't be doing at all." - Dr. Gerald Bracey author of Rotten Apples in Education

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Friday, December 10, 2010

Florida Governor Elect Rick Scott--Revolutionary in Disguise?

Now this is something to ponder.

Rick Scott, governor elect of Florida, "has the idea of giving vouchers to all students, essentially ending public education as it is known everywhere else in the country and the world."

Scott is putting forth a choice for taxpayers on how their tax dollars should be spent for their children. It is amazing and radical for a governor to go against the "status quo" of today's educational push...the rush to common core standards and Race to the Top funding.

Read the comments from this Politico piece. Readers have differing opinions on the use of public money for education.

What do you think?


  1. I am a public school teacher but believe it or not I am not against vouchers nor do I think that school choice would end public education.

    Have private universities destroyed public universities? No... they have made them a lot better.

    As someone who ran a successful private business for 17 years before returning to the classroom, I am a strong believer that competition leads to a higher quality of goods and services.

    Public schools have huge advantages over any private school…... Facilities, money, publicity, and tradition through sports and all kinds of activities. If you give me that kind of head start I will wipe out the competition. Of course you have to be willing to serve your customers and provide a top notch service and/or product... not just dictate because you are a monopoly.

    I know most people in the education business don't understand the marketplace, but that is also why we don't see the kind of changes that actually make a difference in outcomes. No private business could survive the ineptitude that public schools get away with.

    To be sure vouchers would take away some students from public schools.... But in most cases that would be a good thing. Public schools don't benefit from keeping students who don't want to be there whether they are top students, low students or special religious groups.

    The argument that all the good students would leave and the public schools would be left with the rest doesn't hold up to reality. For instance in our state juniors and seniors can opt to take their courses at a community college and have them paid for by the state. You can't beat that college scholarship. Many students take a few classes this way but few leave their high schools. Why? They don't want to give up the high school "experience."

    What happens in our public high schools is deeply entrenched throughout our nation. I don't think competition would change that...it would only make it stronger.

  2. Mr. Dean - I completely agree with all of your comments and reasoning. We all pay school tax and I wish that a voucher system would become a reality in Missouri. The fact that you are a teacher in a public school is encouraging, as you see vouchers as something that would benefit ALL - students, teachers and schools. I honestly never hear that from the teachers that I know. And I am quite sure that the teacher's unions are not in favor of a voucher system - nor the Federal Government.

    I feel that your insight is due to your private business success. I see a lot of teachers that I feel are simply "burned out" due to mandates, large classroom size, etc. But, unlike others of us that have chosen different careers (and may change careers several times in our lifetime), they stay in their field. I think that they would once again enjoy their career choice, if they had the option of teaching in a private school setting (as the environment is quite different) while making the same amount of money. I feel that a voucher system would allow private schools to pay their teachers higher salaries.

    My grandchildren have attended both public and private schools. Their private school was a small Christian school. My granddaughter,(who struggles in school), received individual attention, was allowed to progress at her own pace and seldom had homework. My grandson (who excells in school) was allowed to start school a year early and as the last month of school rolled around was given the option of reviewing things that he had learned throughout the year or start on the next grade level.

    I think that EVERYONE would win if tax dollars (in the form of vouchers) simply followed the student.


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