Romney’s plan seems certain to hasten privatization of public schools systems, WaPo, 5/27/12

posted May 29, 2012, 4:37 AM by Bill Duncan

BY Valerie Strauss

The Washington Post
First Published May 27 2012 07:58 pm • Last Updated May 27 2012 10:11 pm

Anybody who thinks President Barack Obama’s education policies have been unfriendly to public education should pay close attention to Mitt Romney’s school reform vision.

If you don’t like Obama’s agenda, you might like Romney’s even less.

A Chance For Every Child is the education program that the presumptive Republican presidential nominee spelled out in a speech and a white paper released Wednesday.

Romney is advancing a pro-choice, pro-voucher, pro-states-rights education program that seems certain to hasten the privatization of the public education system.

In a Romney-run education world, the parents of poor and special-education students would choose a school - public or private, based on standardized test scores and other data - and then a specific amount of public money would follow the child to the school.

It’s a voucher system that would, among other things, require families of the neediest children to constantly shop around for schools in an unstable market and would probably exacerbate the very thing - a chronic achievement gap - all of this is supposedly intended to fix. Obama opposes vouchers.

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