Arizona Governor Doug Ducey calls for expansive parental choice in inaugural address

(Guest Post by Matthew Ladner)

“It will be a first principle of my agenda that schools and choices available to affluent parents must be open to all parents, whatever their means, wherever they live, period.”

12 Responses to Arizona Governor Doug Ducey calls for expansive parental choice in inaugural address

  1. Greg Forster says:

    Left something out of your post:


    Hope he means it when he says he’ll expand choice to all regardless of income – that’s universal choice, not a program only for the poor (i.e. a poor program).

  2. Tunya Audain says:

    Amazing For Parents In Arizona !

    That promise by Gov Doug Ducey is so exciting, and SO correct philosophically. Hope that’s the 2015 trend.

    I keep spreading the ESA idea as much as I can in Canada. We have one province here — Ontario, with a $12.5 Billion deficit, $23,000 per man/woman/child. This is what I just published in the National Post

    How The 90¢ Education $ Would Cut Ontario Deficit By 1+ Billion

    Taxpayers are not generally averse to paying for public education. What they would like to see is a better Return on Investment (ROI).

    Firstly, there is a lot of wastage and over-inflated costs. Teacher union collective bargaining, bureaucratic empire building plus hosts of other inefficiencies contribute to a chiseling away from the education dollar what should be going directly to educate a student. Somehow, education is prone to wastage. In the 70s UNESCO produced reports on Wastage in Education — A World Problem.

    Secondly, corruption occurs when accountability is slack and where the consumer is kept at arm’s length from decisions and feedback. The narrative has always been that the system knows what’s best for the students, and customers — parents and guardians must comply. The system easily gets bloated with hordes of ancillary staffs, consultants and public relations experts who feed that marketing hype.

    What if the payments from the public purse were flipped? Pay the client rather than the provider? Shave the education dollar to 90% of its worth to the system and see how many parents choose the option?

    Exactly this model is now operating successfully in Arizona with respect to Special Needs students. Variously called Education Savings Accounts (ESA) or Education Debit Accounts or Empowerment Scholarship Plan, this program has also been adopted in Florida and actively pursued in other states. The parents of the student have their special account loaded with an amount equal to 90% of what a school system would get — per student plus top-ups for the SN category — to spend on approved choices in services, education, tutoring and talent development. Who better than parents to assess what’s best? And they would be prudent with the money especially if savings can be carried over from year to year or even towards post-secondary education.

    See stories on this topic —

    Let’s think outside the box on education delivery. If we started from scratch wouldn’t something like an ESA plan work for parents and students? Wouldn’t teachers love to start their own specialty schools? Wouldn’t tons of talent development programs arise — technology, arts, entertainment academies, sports
    academies, etc.?

    Academic scores and graduation rates would likely increase. And the provincial debt would decrease.

  3. matthewladner says:

    I was waiting to see if I would get an “AMEN!” from the congregation 🙂

  4. Not a very intelligent comment from the governor.
    Choice already exists.
    There was a choice made between a man and woman to have intercourse with the possibility of the creation of new life. If they made that choice without preparing for the consequence of it, it is foolish of them to expect the public through taxes to support their irresponsibility.

    Strangely, their desire for a government bailout is supported by “conservatives.”

    • Greg Forster says:

      So government owned schools aren’t supported by taxes?

    • allen says:

      Apparently the governor of Arizona is under the impression that there’s no good reason for parents to relinquish all choices subsequent to the one that results in a child. Inasmuch as he was elected to the position of governor that would tend to indicate many Arizonans share his views your estimates of their intelligence not withstanding.

      While I can appreciate the political significance of the governor’s announcement, turning himself into a political lightning rod as he has, I’m inclined to save the “BOOOOM” for passage of the resulting, in any, legislation. For the public education establishment vouchers are still seen as their most serious threat although there’s a rising level of discomfort with charters as well.

      • Oh dear Allen. Skulking around here now.
        You and Greg have difficulty reading and thinking. You are still making the parents don’t have choices line that grew boring over at Joanne Jacobs.
        I must say though, I do like the notion that if I had children the Arizona governor thinks I ought to be able to send them to a very nice school like Stone Ridge, Georgetown Visitation, Sidwell Friends, National Cathedral, Holton Arms et al with the yearly tuition over $20,000. I wonder if the governor thinks those tax payers who choose not to have kids could direct their portion of the educator. Dollars to the school of their choice for their next door neighbor.

        Oh, Greg, I see you can’t back up you ludicrous claim about Newark parents. They must have intimated the New Jersey legislators into being mean to Cami Abderson yesterday.

      • allen says:

        The same crude insults, lies and misrepresentations but no skeevy sexual references. I guess you are educable. To a modest extent.

        I’m sure the governor’s in rather closer touch with the views of the citizens of Arizona then yourself so there’s a pretty good chance Arizona will have a universal voucher system before too long.

        The poor parents who are most likely to use those vouchers probably don’t have their sights set on the likes of Sidwell Friends. They probably just want schools that will teach their kids to read and keep them from being shot. Those modest needs are the ones which their district schools have failed to deliver on.

        Makes me wonder how long the district system will last.

      • As usual, dodge the issue and miss the point.
        For those who don’t know, over at Joanne Jacob’s site, Allen would often bring up a porn actress to buttress his (missed) points.

      • allen says:

        I stand corrected.

      • Of course, Allen.
        As Sly Stone sang:
        Stand for the things you know are right
        It’s the truth that the truth makes them so uptight
        Stand, all the things you want are real
        You have you to complete and there is no deal

        Read more: Sly & The Family Stone – Stand! Lyrics | MetroLyrics

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