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Friday, December 5, 2014

It is intellectually dishonest to support vouchers in Florida

The Lakeland Ledger wrote an editorial supporting vouchers and with all due respect to them left a lot out. 

First teachers at voucher schools don’t have to be certified, their curriculums don’t have to be recognized (many teach creationism as science) and the vast amount of the schools don’t even have their financials reviewed to make sure they are spending the money appropriately.

Also why is accountability only required of public schools but it gets a collective shrug from voucher advocates, who are usually the same people? There are undoubtedly great private schools that take vouchers but instead of weeding out the bad apples they beat the drum of expand, expand, expand.

Vouchers will take 716 million out of the state coffers next year. 358 million in voucher donations matched with a similar tax credit. That’s a lot of money that could pay for a lot of different things and shouldn’t be just brushed aside. That is money that also has to be made up by the tax payers of Florida, going to replace money that is being spent on religious institutions that they may not support.

It’s hard to understand that if people look past the rhetoric they would objectively support vouchers as they are done in Florida. They don’t represent  opportunity for poor and mostly minority children, if people really cared about that they would fighting for an expansion of the bright futures scholarships which have been dramatically cut as vouchers expanded, they represent privatization and are just a bad deal all around.

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