Advancing a Free Society

The Voucher Revolution

Thursday, November 17, 2011

To be clear, a voucher as the term is used here is a publicly or privately funded scholarship awarded directly to families to pay the costs of the private schools they choose for their children. By 2030, vouchers will have displaced failing public schools, which have long yielded poor results at high costs and have monopolistically confined children to a failing system. Although based largely on facts established by 2010, this essay provides an admittedly speculative account of the rising prevalence of vouchers from the present through 2030 from the hypothetical perspective of 2040.

Because they know best and care most about their children, parents used vouchers to choose the right schools for their children.  With vouchers, parents could choose their children’s schools just as they chose their names, food, doctors, and much else. No longer could competing federal, state, and local government officials decide what’s best for students. Just as in competitive markets, vouchers provided incentives and rewards to educators for successes that were missing from public schools. Schools that were most appealing to parents thrived and multiplied; the least appealing ones shrank and closed. The voucher system put in place standards and accountability for both private schools and parents.

Continue reading Herbert Walberg...