School Choice Makes Homeschoolers and Private Schools More Safe from Government, Not Less

(Guest post by Greg Forster)

OCPA carries my latest, on why school choice programs make homeschoolers and private schools more safe, not less safe, from government interference:

Once these programs exist, they quickly become so politically strong that they are almost never reduced in size or subjected to any kind of additional regulations or requirements. The politicians typically try that stuff once, get beaten badly, run home and never try it again.

Why? Because once these programs exist, they create a huge new constituency to protect them. Once parents see their children liberated from the government school monopoly, they’re not about to let anyone mess with their children again.

And families that value educational freedom are going to need that political strength for reasons that have nothing to do with choice programs:

The right to raise your children in accordance with the dictates of your own conscience is being set up for threats like it’s rarely seen in this country. Homeschoolers and private schools are going to face these challenges whether there are school choice programs in their state or not. What they need most right now is an organized political constituency that is large enough and institutionalized enough and angry enough to fight back. They’re feeling increasingly vulnerable and anxious, because they don’t have that now—except in places that have big school choice programs, where the organizing has already been done, and many thousands more parents are part of non-government education than before choice programs existed.

Let me know what you think!

2 Responses to School Choice Makes Homeschoolers and Private Schools More Safe from Government, Not Less

  1. harriettubmanagenda says:

    Simple: Parent Performance Contracting (PPC)
    Your legislature mandates that all school districts in your State must hire parents on personal service contracts to provide for their children’s education if the parents apply for the contract.
    Search “The Harriet Tubman Agenda, The Proposal”.
    PPC requires no new administrative machinery.
    PPC provides financial and performance accountability.
    PPC elides the First Amendment “establishment” argument.
    PPC elides the “takes money from public schools” argument.
    PPC poses minimal threat of government interference into the operation of independent and parochial schools.

  2. Greg Dolan says:

    Making my comment before I read the full article, but I appreciate the premise. When I worked on choice bills, it always struck as very paternalistic for groups to tell me (rep’ing the schools) that *actually* a choice program would backfire. In an America where private schooling is on the decline and the Borg of district schooling is swallowing every family, I’ll take the risk of a mediocre program over guaranteed slow decline.

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