If you are a regular reader, I know that I am preaching to the choir. But sometimes you have to vent to the only people who seem to be listening… As I have written before, vouchers are nothing more than a tax break for the rich – masquerading as a benefit to the poor. I don’t think that the masses want vouchers, I think they just don’t care. And it is this lack of caring that plays into the hands of those who want to tear down public education. So for those of us who are public school advocates, the following is the real voucher agenda. “I’m rich and I want to select the peer group of my children. After all, I don’t want any poor, black or brown to rub off on them. So instead of sending my kids to a public school, I’m going to send them to a private school. This is well within my rights. But now I realize that on top of my $25,000+ private school tuition, I am still paying public school taxes. Why should I pay for the maid’s kids to go to school? That’s her responsibility, not mine. Oh the injustice, woe is me! What would be fair would be for the state to give me back some of my school taxes so I could use it cover some of the cost of my kids’ exclusive private school. But how to I make this palatable to the masses? I know, we will call it a “choice” option. Anybody can use the voucher to make any private school more affordable. The fact that it will take more than the voucher amount to cover tuition is not my problem. What’s important is that I’ll get mine. And if that poor, black or brown kid is a really good athlete, we could give them a scholarship to make up the difference. And so what if it hurts the public schools, it not like my kids were ever going to attend there.” Now, here are two dirty little secrets about school vouchers (actually, they are only secrets if one chooses to remain ignorant). First, providing a subsidy to allow someone to pay for admission to an exclusionary organization is no guarantee that they will be accepted into the organization. The best and most appropriate examples of this are fraternities and sororities. Just because your daddy provides you with the money to pay the fraternity dues doesn’t mean that you will be allowed to pledge (especially, if you have the wrong daddy). Fraternities, like private school, are exclusionary for a reason. They exist because their constituents have rejected some or all of the public. Second, the overall economic costs of a service with a subsidy are more than the overall economic costs of a service without a subsidy. The economic term is called “deadweight cost.” It is the entity that provides the subsidy that absorbs the extra (deadwood) costs. Now our reformist, voucher proponents are not stupid people. Therefore for them to support vouchers means they are either for: 1. Inefficient government spending; 2. Supporting exclusionary organizations;3. Providing tax breaks for the rich;4. Dismantling public schools; 5. Some form of personal gain; or 6. They are ill advised. And that’s why voucher proponents are not listening to reason nor are they playing fair. Because for them, it has absolutely nothing to do with reason and fair. So who are you voting for in the next election? Think. Work. Achieve. Your turn… Now Available on Amazon.com! “The Fundamental 5: The Formula for Quality Instruction” http://tinyurl.com/4ydqd4t Follow Sean Cain on www.Twitter.com/LYSNation Upcoming Event / Presentation Schedule June 11 (TASB) – The Fundamental Five; Improve Now! June 15 (TASSP) – Improve Now! June 16 (TASSP) – Conference Breakfast, hosted by E. Don Brown (LYS travel tumblers for the first 1000 attendees, last year we ran out) June 16 (TASSP) – Book Release Event, “The Fundamental 5: The Formula for Quality Instruction” June 16 (TASSP) – Fundamental Five; Tech Tools for the 2.0 Principal June 17 (TASSP) – PowerWalks June 18 (TASB) – The Fundamental Five; Improve Now!