Why I Support School Choice Part 2

Yesterday I began to talk about school choice and various arguments for and against it. To quickly recap–I am in favor of school choice because I think it helps improve schools over all. Let’s keep looking at some more arguments.

Tax funded vouchers would increase divisions between rich and poor, between different religions, and between different ethnic groups.

I’m not sure how vouchers would increase division beyond what is already there. Furthermore, as I’ve previously pointed out, public school funding is not the issue when it comes to a good education. It should also be noted that school choice allows students from low income families to attend school outside of their neighborhoods. Some research suggests that tax funded vouchers lead to more diversity rather than less.

School choice will lead to radical and extremist groups such as the Ku Klux Klan or the Nation of Islam to start schools to promote their own propoganda.

This is very unlikely to happen. First of all, federal and state laws prohibit institutions from discrimination or illegal activity. So even if, in theory, there were such a school, it would not be eligible to receive school vouchers. Besides, surveys show that parents consider most strongly, a school’s academic record before sending their child to that school–even over religious beliefs.

Tax funded subsidies send tax dollars to religiously affiliated schools and is therefore, an unconstitutional use of tax dollars.

This is an interesting argument. I had to do some research to come up with an answer and I was a little surprised by what I found: our tax dollars already go to support religiously affiliated institutions such as hospitals, social service providers and universities.

The U.S. Supreme Court ruled that it is not unconstitutional for people to use their vouchers at religiously affiliated schools because it is their choice. So in other words, if a parent was prohibited from sending their child to a religiously affiliated school, or if only certain religious schools were eligible (all Jewish schools, or only Catholic schools) that would also be unconstitutional. But since the money is potentially being diverted to the school by parental choice–it is seen as an appropriate use of tax dollars.

Related Articles:

Why I Support School Choice Part 1

Vouchers in New York City?

National School Voucher System Proposed by Congress

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