Monday, June 13, 2005

Charters Vs. Private School Vouchers 

You will not find a greater charter school supporter than me. However, one point that I have been making over the years is that in trying to improve inner city education it would be preferable to have a voucher program in which any child could participate rather than charter schools. The reason is that charter schools are start-up businesses. They have to learn with experience how to tailor their program to achieve the best results with an extremely challenging population of students.

To support my claim consider the article today by V. Dion Haynes in the Washington Post about how vouchers are helping Catholic schools. He writes:

Pre-tests administered in the fall by the archdiocese showed that many voucher students were three to four grades behind in math and reading, archdiocesan officials said. But they said their schools have long specialized in helping low-income and academically challenged students and thus have not needed to make major changes to meet the needs of the new pupils.

One problem with this article is Mr. Haynes' reliance on People for the American Way for a contrasting point of view. This is not an objective group when it comes to this subject and I will contact the reporter this morning about this issue.

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