Wednesday, October 17, 2007

"Have you no sense of decency, sir?" "Indeed I do, only I seem to have left it on your mother's nightstand."

This will be the first of many posts in the next two weeks about how totally retarded Utah's proposed voucher law is. My main quarrel with the voucher law is that it reflects an attitude of either defeat or contempt for public schools. On the one hand, legislators and some citizens might feel that public schools are no longer functioning and must be supplanted by the private sector. On the other hand, another group (possibly consisting of the same people as the first) feel that public schools are indoctrinating our children in evil ways, teaching them to be godless, hateful, and liberal.

Both of the above attitudes reflect bigotry and blindness about public schools. While it may be true that in other places (cough, Mississippi, cough) their school systems aren't as good and that drastic changes are necessary. However, in Utah, our school systems are doing pretty darn good (in spite of being grossly underfunded). We have many high schools that rank in the top 500 in the country. I am the third of six children to graduate from Davis High School (in Kaysville) and 5 of the 6 have attended or graduated from college or graduate school (the sixth isn't old enough yet). Our public schools are doing just fine, and if anything, need additional funding, not less funding.

As for the other group, those who hate what is being taught, I say, screw off. Public schools teach the curriculae given to them by the school district and state legislature. Both of those bodies consist of publicly elected officials who are responsible to the people. If you don't like what is being taught, either elect new officials, or get a religious exemption to certain teachings. If that isn't enough, home school them or send them to a bigotry, I mean, private school but don't expect the state to foot the bill. It's your problem, you find a solution.

So choke on that.


Referendum One said...

Thanks for talking about this, Daniel. I've been asking questions about this law almost daily for some time and can find plenty of reporting on special events, but not any real factual answers or analysis of the law from the mainstream media.

Daniel said...

I will be doing some in-depth analysis of the text of the bill in upcoming posts. I hope that my "fact-finding" is much more thorough and credible than that garbage KSL put out the other day.

Rob said...

I think that the vouchers are a good idea, but the current attempted implimentation is poor at best. I believe the public school system needs some competition/checks and balances. I can't tell you how many horrible teachers I had growing up, but they are impossible to get rid of because of their tenure. I think that the school board is overpowered and they need to be brought down a notch. So, I think that you are correct about reforremdum 1, but I also think that something needs to be done to improve our schools. I would argue that the ability for the schools to perform well under lack of funding is more of a reflection on the actual students and their families that push them towards excellence than the quality of the schools.