School choice week

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mom3girls's picture
Joined: 01/09/07
Posts: 1537
School choice week

This week is national school choice week. What do you think of people having the ability to choose what school their child goes too and recieve tax credits for that choice?

National School Choice Week

Joined: 04/12/03
Posts: 1686

If that means the schools can choose who they will accept, it sucks.

We have several schools of choice and charter schools. What does that mean? The top students are recruited and others who apply are excluded. Court appearances, CPS visits, changes in foster care placement, and "homeless" (according the NCLB definition), are common at our school. Who advocates for them to go to the best school of choice?

Spacers's picture
Joined: 12/29/03
Posts: 4103

You mean religious and private schools? No. The government provides a free education for all students at the public schools. If you don't like the public school, or if you want something *more* for your child, then you have to pay for it.

mom3girls's picture
Joined: 01/09/07
Posts: 1537

I am all for school choice, and parents given the freedom to choose what is best for their kids.

All 3 of my school age kids are in private christian based schooling. The religious teachings are important to us, but secondary to why we send them to the schools we did. The schools they are in average 20% higher test scores. The high school has 75% of the graduates able to enter college with enough credits to get them through half way through sophomore year.
I would LOVE to get a tax credit to help pay for the tuition

mom3girls's picture
Joined: 01/09/07
Posts: 1537

"Spacers" wrote:

You mean religious and private schools? No. The government provides a free education for all students at the public schools. If you don't like the public school, or if you want something *more* for your child, then you have to pay for it.

What if the public school system is failing your child? You are locked into it unless you have the money to get out?

mom3girls's picture
Joined: 01/09/07
Posts: 1537

This isnt just about private and religious school either, this includes charter and magnet schools

Spacers's picture
Joined: 12/29/03
Posts: 4103

"mom3girls" wrote:

What if the public school system is failing your child? You are locked into it unless you have the money to get out?

Then you take action. You work to make it better. Move to a different district. Lobby the district for a different principal. Raise money for programs you think are important. If your chosen action is to place your child in a private school, why should the government support that in addition to the public schools it's already supporting?

Spacers's picture
Joined: 12/29/03
Posts: 4103

"mom3girls" wrote:

This isnt just about private and religious school either, this includes charter and magnet schools

ITA with what EthanWinfield said about charters & magnet schools. They shouldn't be able to pick & choose their students. That should IMHO disqualify them from government funding. The government is supposed to educate ALL kids for free.

AlyssaEimers's picture
Joined: 08/22/06
Posts: 6568

In my opinion, you have two different debates here. The first being about public schools vs. private schools. The second being the ability to choose which public school you go to. For this portion of the debate I will assume we are talking about choosing which public schools you are going to go to. DH works in a Public School in GA. How it works there is that you can go to whatever school in that county that you want to, but that the buses will only take you to the school you are zoned for. If you want to go to a different school you have to drive your kids yourself. You can not go outside of the county. Where I grew up, you had to go to the school you were zoned for or pay tuition. The schools where my kids are zoned for are terrible. If we lived in an area that had great public schools I might send my kids to public schools. However, the school where my kids are zoned for is terrible. We might move in the future, but right now we have chosen to homeschool. I do think the way DH's school does it is a good option. You can't change schools during the middle of the year and once a school fills up, they do not have to accept more students that are not from that zone.

As for vouchers for private or Christian schools it is a very sticky situation. On one side you do not want the Government to come in a fundamentally change the school and make it so that it can not be Christian any more. On the other side, it seems terribly unfair to pay thousands of dollars in taxes to pay for public schools while at the same time paying thousands of dollars in tuition.

Rivergallery's picture
Joined: 05/23/03
Posts: 1301

And then you get the issue, of getting gov money but not wanting the gov control. That is why lots of homeschoolers don't want vouchers.

mom3girls's picture
Joined: 01/09/07
Posts: 1537

I dont think that vouchers would necessarily invite government interference. If they are just giving you money that you paid in taxes back, to help pay for your childs education they you use the money how you would like to use it

Joined: 08/17/04
Posts: 2226

That tax money is supposed to support local public schooling so the government does get a say in what is taught and when. You bring tax dollars into a religious school and the same thing will happen. You can't have it both ways.

ftmom's picture
Joined: 09/04/06
Posts: 1538

"mom3girls" wrote:

What if the public school system is failing your child? You are locked into it unless you have the money to get out?

Here there are a few different options within the public system. We are a small district with 7ish elementary schools (not positive on how many rural schools we have) and we have a French as a Second Language school and a school based on Project Based Learning. You have to send your child to the school they are zoned for, unless you send them to one of those schools. It is nice to have a few different options though, and like I said, we are a small district, larger towns and cities have even more options withing the system.

ftmom's picture
Joined: 09/04/06
Posts: 1538

"AlyssaEimers" wrote:

In my opinion, you have two different debates here. The first being about public schools vs. private schools. The second being the ability to choose which public school you go to. For this portion of the debate I will assume we are talking about choosing which public schools you are going to go to. DH works in a Public School in GA. How it works there is that you can go to whatever school in that county that you want to, but that the buses will only take you to the school you are zoned for. If you want to go to a different school you have to drive your kids yourself. You can not go outside of the county. Where I grew up, you had to go to the school you were zoned for or pay tuition. The schools where my kids are zoned for are terrible. If we lived in an area that had great public schools I might send my kids to public schools. However, the school where my kids are zoned for is terrible. We might move in the future, but right now we have chosen to homeschool. I do think the way DH's school does it is a good option. You can't change schools during the middle of the year and once a school fills up, they do not have to accept more students that are not from that zone.

As for vouchers for private or Christian schools it is a very sticky situation. On one side you do not want the Government to come in a fundamentally change the school and make it so that it can not be Christian any more. On the other side, it seems terribly unfair to pay thousands of dollars in taxes to pay for public schools while at the same time paying thousands of dollars in tuition.

To the bolded: IMO this is what causes many schools to get a 'bad' rep. All it takes is one year of a bad principal and the parents who care about their childs education and can afford to pull their children. The kids left in the school are ones whos parents dont care about their education (this attitude is translated clearly to most kids), or cant afford to drive their kids to school (or homeschool). These are the kids that act out the most and need extra help. In an average school these kids are mixed into the school population and often can overcome their disadvantage, however, when this is most of the school, you end up with a situation where experienced teachers dont want to teach at the school, more class time is spent on classroom management then learning, and students who do want to learn just keep their heads down and do the best they can.

We had this situation in our district until recently. They ended up closing a school because it had so few kids in it. I would not teach in the school because it was so horrible to be in. The school near our house was similar, but not quite as bad. They amalgamated the two schools and now force you to go to your neighborhood school. Our property values have gone WAY up as the school is slowly getting a better reputation, and IMO all the kids are getting a better education.

mom3girls's picture
Joined: 01/09/07
Posts: 1537

We do not have the option here of going to a different school then what we are zoned for unless we get approval from both schools. The biggest district here in town made it very clear they would not release the money for students that wanted to go out of dist, and they would not accept any new students this year

AlyssaEimers's picture
Joined: 08/22/06
Posts: 6568

"mom3girls" wrote:

I dont think that vouchers would necessarily invite government interference. If they are just giving you money that you paid in taxes back, to help pay for your childs education they you use the money how you would like to use it

We had this debate awhile back. There were many that felt strongly that any school that received public funds would need to teach on evolution and not have any prayer or was religious in any way.

"ftmom" wrote:

To the bolded: IMO this is what causes many schools to get a 'bad' rep. All it takes is one year of a bad principal and the parents who care about their childs education and can afford to pull their children. The kids left in the school are ones whos parents dont care about their education (this attitude is translated clearly to most kids), or cant afford to drive their kids to school (or homeschool). These are the kids that act out the most and need extra help. In an average school these kids are mixed into the school population and often can overcome their disadvantage, however, when this is most of the school, you end up with a situation where experienced teachers dont want to teach at the school, more class time is spent on classroom management then learning, and students who do want to learn just keep their heads down and do the best they can.

This may be so, but I am still not willing to send my kids to one of the worst schools in the area under the hopes that it will be a better school 10 years from now. There is a lot of gang violence. I also have heard from a neighbour about his daughter's experiences of being the only white child in an all black class. Now I have no problem with anyone's color of skin, but how she was treated by the other students was terrible. This is just not a school district that I am willing to put my kids in.

ftmom's picture
Joined: 09/04/06
Posts: 1538

"AlyssaEimers" wrote:

We had this debate awhile back. There were many that felt strongly that any school that received public funds would need to teach on evolution and not have any prayer or was religious in any way.

This may be so, but I am still not willing to send my kids to one of the worst schools in the area under the hopes that it will be a better school 10 years from now. There is a lot of gang violence. I also have heard from a neighbour about his daughter's experiences of being the only white child in an all black class. Now I have no problem with anyone's color of skin, but how she was treated by the other students was terrible. This is just not a school district that I am willing to put my kids in.

Sorry, just realized my post came off as judgy to you. I totally get where you are coming from. I actually put DD into our french school, and have to drive her every day, and a big part of that is not wanting her in our neighborhood school. The younger grades are good now, but the older grades......I wont teach them, so I wouldnt want her exposed to them, and they mix the grades 3 times a week. So as much as I hate it, it is more the system that I have a problem with, not the individual parents who do what is best for their kids.

Alissa_Sal's picture
Joined: 06/29/06
Posts: 6427

I think that "vouchers" are just a way to get tax payers to fund religious schools, in essence making them public schools, only publics schools that are now allowed to violate the First Amendment. I'm against it. I agree that if you want to send your kid to a religious school, it should be on you to pay it. I also think that any school that accepts public money should be subject to the same rules as normal public schools.

AlyssaEimers's picture
Joined: 08/22/06
Posts: 6568

"ftmom" wrote:

Sorry, just realized my post came off as judgy to you. I totally get where you are coming from. I actually put DD into our french school, and have to drive her every day, and a big part of that is not wanting her in our neighborhood school. The younger grades are good now, but the older grades......I wont teach them, so I wouldnt want her exposed to them, and they mix the grades 3 times a week. So as much as I hate it, it is more the system that I have a problem with, not the individual parents who do what is best for their kids.

Thank you. There can be a lot of judgement on where someone sends their kids to school, but at this point in our lives, we feel it is the best option for us.

Joined: 05/31/06
Posts: 4780

"Alissa_Sal" wrote:

I think that "vouchers" are just a way to get tax payers to fund religious schools, in essence making them public schools, only publics schools that are now allowed to violate the First Amendment. I'm against it. I agree that if you want to send your kid to a religious school, it should be on you to pay it. I also think that any school that accepts public money should be subject to the same rules as normal public schools.

I agree.