Data such as standardized test scores can only tell us so much. For one thing, children are not standardized.
Calling education a public good is potentially dangerous.
In 1926, J. Gresham Machen testified before a congressional committee regarding a proposed federal department of education. In the first minute of his testimony, he explained that the purpose of the bill was “to promote uniformity in education,” which, he asserted, “is the worst fate into which any country can fall.”
“Perhaps the voucher movement ought to be called the ‘Make schools accountable to parents’ movement.” – Arnold Kling
Why is a model of education that is also profitable seen as such a bad thing?
“The State shall make no law with respect to the establishment of education.” – Austrian philosopher Ivan Illich
Because students educated at home or in private schools regularly outperform students in public schools, it seems reasonable to conclude that such accommodations have not had a detrimental effect on the quality of education in these states.
The U.S. public school system has faced criticism for decades. Whether it’s school funding, curriculum controversies, debates over teacher compensation and tenure, or American students under performing when compared to other developed countries, there’s no shortage of discontent with the way things are. Professor Kevin Currie-Knight asks, in a recent piece at FEE, why things […]
A common theme among liberty-minded thinkers is a high degree of skepticism toward state administered education. They’ve often come to the conclusion that public schools act more to create a population of subservient factory workers with little skills in the way of critical thinking. To learn more about how the public school system harms students […]