Sunday, March 08, 2009

Democrats Kill D.C. Scholarship Program

There is a school choice program in D.C. that Democrats in Congress are doing everything in their power to kill. The D.C. Opportunity Scholarship Program allows parents in the District of Columbia to move their children out of dangerous and failing schools and send them to better performing, safer schools with some federal help. By "dangerous and failing" , Dan Lips and Robert Enlow write:

"One out of every eight D.C. students reported being assaulted or injured with a deadly weapon during a recent school year. That’s equal to the percentage of D.C. eighth-graders who scored “proficient” in reading on the National Assessment of Educational Progress."

Currently there are some 1,700 children enrolled in the program. At a cost of $14 million, these children are able to attend schools that help them prepare for college, and keep them safe. In an age of multibillion dollar bailouts to banks and auto companies, this program is on the cutting board because Democrats believe in teachers unions more than they believe in families, children, or freedom. Freedom of choice is o.k if Democrats are talking about killing an unborn child, but it is unacceptable when discussing getting a good education for a student in a bad neighborhood.

The current spending bill as passed in the House kills the D.C. scholarship program after the 2009 -2010 school year. Any students still going to private schools will be forced to go back to their zoned public school. Yesterday, Natasha Shannon wrote in the New York Daily News defending the DC program. Ms. Shannon is able to send her two daughters to a better school than she was able to attend as a kid. She graduated valedictorian of her class in Harlem and began attending a community college. In college she had to attend remedial classes in order to stay in school because her high school hadn't prepared the valedictorian to attend a community college.

Democrats have not argued that the D C public school system is working. Instead, Democrats in Congress are dumping money into the D. C. system, and expressly forbidding it be used for any school choice program like the one currently in place. Without authorizing any study on the success of the current DC program, they are killing its funding. Democrats are showing they care more for teachers unions than for parents and children. I thought it was Democrats who fought for minorities and not big business.

For once there is a government program that appears to be working, and is providing families with freedom. Surely we can fund it at the same time we are trying to save badly managed auto companies and banks.

1 comment:

pack04 said...

"One out of every eight D.C. students reported being assaulted or injured with a deadly weapon during a recent school year."

What?!?! 1 out of 8 with a deadly weapon? How many more with a non-deadly weapon? Sounds like somebody should be addressing that issue.

This really should not be that surprising. The government helping a failed thing (DC public school system) stay afloat. Sounds like the whole lot of people in DC are conservatives...interested in keeping the status quo.