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Don Ewing (4-16) 429 SCHOOL CHOICE

To The Daily Sun,

I believe most Americans want other Americans to be happy and successful. However, despite claims to the contrary, progressive politicians fight for the special interests that reward them, even if helping the special interests hurts most Americans.

Let's consider something of vital importance to children, public education.

Over the last 40 years progressive politicians have taken increasing control over public education resulting in increasingly bad results, especially for the children of poor families.

Progressive politicians keep telling us that we must spend more money, and education costs, like health care costs, have tripled (in constant dollars). But unlike health care spending which greatly enhanced life quality and longevity, education quality has declined. The problem is not insufficient money, but the education establishment's monopoly over public education.

The education establishment, like all monopolies, dislikes competition and change, and it wants to protect its 19th century, horse and buggy, model of education. Just putting computers in the classroom or generating top-down programs like Common Core is not exploiting the 21st century possibilities, such as individualized education, which are already revolutionizing education where it is embraced. Unfortunately, the education establishment has been successful using campaign support to essentially bribe progressive politicians for protection from change and competition.

Students in bad schools are condemned to poor preparation for adulthood unless their parents are rich or unless parents can choose their child's school. Often at much less cost than public schools, Charter and private schools demonstrate significant educational results for the same children that were failing in, and dropping out of, public schools.

Yet, instead of embracing the tremendous benefits to children from school choice, progressive politicians, in support of the education establishment, fight against school choice.

Some of the first actions of President Obama, New York's new Mayor de Blasio, and Governor Hassan have been to close down, or stop creation of, charter schools and/or stop school choice programs, despite their extraordinary results.

Progressive politicians have become masters at offering privileges in exchange for campaign support. What is best for most Americans, in this case what is best for children, is sacrificed to benefit the special interest groups and the politicians themselves.

Conservatives believe that the purpose of public education is not to support the education establishment, but to provide an education that prepares students for a successful adulthood. Therefore, conservatives encourage school choice and competition to develop continually improving techniques, tools, and educational results.

Conservatives want everyone to be successful. The fight for changes that improve public school results is just one area where conservatives have been fighting to improve Americans' lives.

Don Ewing

Meredith

 
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