Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Wisconsin education system

So, I'm reading the Cap Times today and there is an article about the maintenance spending at the schools. Again the non Madison residents had fun saying that they should take that money out of teacher and staff salaries. This got me to thinking about an idea that was immensely popular about 10 years ago, Private School Choice.

This plan lost support when it became apparent that tax money would flow to private schools. I was interested in the issue than since my children were attending private schools. But, unlike the proponents of this policy I was paying the tuition myself. See here is the problem, anyone who looks at private schools quickly realizes that it costs nearly what the per student cost of public school is and then they don't want to pay for it. If you are really against the current system you should be advocating for an entirely private system. No one except for the Paul's are for that.

Think about it. If the system went private, your property taxes would go down a lot. The State would no longer fund 2/3 of the schools (which is only true for some districts). The State deficit would disappear overnight. The parents gain the control that they feel they don't have in the public schools. The kids would either get a better education or a worse one depending on who you talk to. The homeowners and renters with children would have to spend a lot more money than their taxes went down by.

We either need to privatize the system or come together and figure out how we are going do education. By do education we need to do it by not balancing the budget at the expense of maintenance or on the backs of the employees. The current public system makes education affordable to most individuals. If we go private many will be cut out. The Paul's would say that there would be private money available to provide scholarships. The reality is that without an alumni base, which most of these newly private schools would be, you don't have wealthy donors. Currently the established private schools really don't have that much to offer in terms of scholarships unless they want you to fill some type of quota, you're athletic, or are tops academically.

People who came before valued education, it is sad that it is no longer the case.

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