Tuesday, July 23, 2013

School choice for the poor; private schools for the rich

The Obamas send their daughters to a toney private school, as do many politicians who come to Washington.  It’s their choice—they love their kids and want the best for them.  However, in 2012 he dropped that same choice (charter schools) for other Washington, DC families, mostly black.  It’s not that he doesn’t care that black children succeed (because they do in those schools), he’s just more afraid of the unions who helped elect him.

The Opportunity Scholarship Program offers vouchers to low-income students to attend private schools. A 2010 study published by Patrick Wolf of the University of Arkansas found that the scholarship recipients had graduation rates of 91%. The graduation rate for D.C. public schools was 56%, and it was 70% for students who entered the lottery for a voucher but didn't win.

Because the president's teachers union allies are opposed to school choice for poor people, Mr. Obama ignores or downplays these findings. He repeatedly has tried to shutter the program, even though it is clearly advancing his stated goal of increasing graduation rates and closing the black-white achievement gap.



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