Public school administrators care more about keeping money in their pockets than improving the quality of education for their students. Unfortunately, a school choice bill (HB1371) failed on the House floor again this week.
Public schools get a check of over $7,000 for every breathing child in their schools. This is regardless of the quality of education that a child receives. It doesn’t matter if kids learn to read, write, or add, they get the $7,000 check. This is why school districts, administrators, superintendents, and all the taxpayer lobbyist money push against school choice in Arkansas. They worry that a parent just may choose to consider sending their child to a different school that may be a better choice for that child.
- Schools Lose Money When Parents Cancel Them. If a child decides to leave a failing public school to go to another school, then that public school no longer gets that $7,000 check. Less money means less administrators, less money for six-figure superintendent pay, and less for whatever else the administrators deem is best for them and their employees.
- What Did This Bill Do? A school choice scholarship tax credit program (HB1371) was voted down again in the Arkansas House this week. Essentially the bill would allow private groups to donate money to a scholarship program in return for tax credits for the donations. This money would be given to low-income children for their parents to select, or choose, whatever school is the best for them, including sending their kid to a private school.
- Zip Code Schooling Fails Kids. Children should not be forced to go to whatever school they happen to fall into because of their zip code. As with anything in life we should have choice and opportunity to choose the best school for our children. Unfortunately, some students cannot afford to attend a private school that may be a better fit for them.
- Parents Have Kids. Let Parents Choose. To paraphrase State Rep. David Ray from his speech on this bill on the house floor — Schools do not have kids. Districts and superintendents do not have kids. Parents have kids and they should be able to decide what is the best school for them to attend to get the best education possible.
- The GOP Platform Supports School Choice. Page 5 of the Arkansas GOP Platform makes it clear that School Choice is supported. It makes clear that parents should have the opportunity and choice regardless of their zip code. The AR Young Republicans took to twitter to call out Republicans for not reading the platform and supporting school choice.
Superintendents, administrators, teachers’ unions, and the massive amounts of taxpayers’ money spent to lobby against school choice have won again. Will those who continue to vote against children and choose teachers’ unions over the voters who elected them, be primaried?
Non Voting: 2 (counts like a Nay vote)
Present: 2 (counts like a Nay vote)