"If there was any argument for vouchers, it was, 'Let's see if it works.' And if it does, whatever my preconception, you do what's best for kids."
A crushing storm is about to blow through the District of Columbia and let us be sure that Mr. Obama and our US Congress are listening to the forecast.
The public schools of D.C. are the worst in the nation and thanks to former President George W. Bush, the families of D.C. have had a choice since 2004. A staunchly 'pro-choice' new leadership is faced with a big decision; continue the Opportunity Scholarship Program by including funds to support it in the budget or not. As the current budget is written, there are no funds for the voucher program included. Currently 1,700 children and their families benefit from school choice and it has really made a positive impact in their lives. Success stories abound with children being the first to graduate from high school in their family and going on to good universities and kids being shocked that there are no police stationed at the private schools or metal detectors at every door.
One guess as to who is most against school vouchers --- public school teacher's unions. Most of the children benefiting from the scholarship program attend Archdiocesan Catholic schools and the average cost to educate a student is close to $7,000 compared to the $14,000 it costs for a public education in D.C. where only half of the children can even read at the appropriate grade level. 99% of the children who receive a scholarship are either hispanic or African american and their household income tends to be less than $23,000 per year. The maximum voucher amount is $7,500 per year and if the child attends a high school where the tuition is higher than that amount, the school absorbs the added cost instead of passing it on to the family. Most of the schools cost less to attend and the amount of the voucher would be adjusted.
The people who were elected to serve our country do not send their children to public schools in Washington, D.C. Of course the Obama children are going to an expensive private school. With Senator Durbin leading the way, school choice and opportunity for these children will be crushed. Write your Senators, Representatives and the President. Tell them to include funding for the Opportunity Scholarship Program.
For further information on current news articles on the scholarship program click on the following links:
_________________________Democrats and Poor Kids