Unchosen School Choices

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Looks as though D.C.'s voucher program is off to a rocky start: Despite infamously rotten public schools, there weren't enough applicants to fill all the slots, almost certainly the result of lax efforts to publicize the program. Some critics are apparently fuming that some of the voucher recipients are already attending private schools, but the complaint seems pretty bizarre: The income cutoff for the program is around $36,000 annually for a family of four, so it's not like the money's going to scions of the D.C. elite at Sidwell Friends or some such thing, but rather those parents who were willing to make a significant financial sacrifice to get their children into better schools.

NEXT: High Security

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  1. This is just par-for-the-course here in the District. You will hard pressed to find a more dysfunctional school system (not to mentioned well funded) in the country. As much as I like the voucher program it won't solve any of DC's problems. There is no accountability what so ever there, thus there's no incentive to change. So DCPS looses 1200 students, what does it care? Its certainly not losing the funding that went with those kids since its Federal dosh that?s paying their way. In fact, to grease the skids on the voucher program DCPS was "rewarded" with an additional $13 million (of course its found a way to screw even that up).

    If you want to follow the crap-fest that is the District of Columbia Public Schools I invite you to have a gander at The DC Education Blog.

  2. The DC school district spends $13,187 per student per year, higher than any other school district in the US?! crazy..

  3. I guess they must turn out the best educated graduates in the country then.

  4. Actually, the District alone spends what would be the equivalent of state + local funding elsewhere. This means things like costly special education programs that states usually pay for are funded by the DC government without the help of a state.

    I'm not going to pretend we have even close to a top-quality public school education here, but we should at least be sure to get our facts straight and not compare apples to apples + oranges.

  5. Update:

    The Post article actually paints the situation in a much more negative light that what it actually is. The program is not undersubscribed. Check out this AP report, which jibes with what the Washington Scholarship Fund (who are adminstering the program) told me.

  6. Alan,

    Go look at the data. The numbers for each state include Federal, State and local funding. This is an apples to apples comparison.

  7. Nuns with guns, that's what those schools need.

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