Saturday, February 03, 2007

An Historic Day for Utah (I think)

The Republican majority in the Utah Legislature has finally lived up to their conservative reputation and passed -- by a single vote -- a school voucher system for all children in Utah.

Don't get me wrong, I think this is a great development. But there are some caveats, one of which I'm not really pleased with: Homeschoolers can't get a voucher to help cover the sometimes considerable costs of homeschooling. You will have to enroll your kid in a private school, and for most people that will mean they will still have to pay a significant amount out of pocket. So the upshot will be that many people who wish to send their children to private schools will have to put up with Publik Ejukashun for a while until private tuition prices fall or the program is expanded. Thus, I don't forsee a massive rush to the exits by parents, even though the desire is definitely there.

Nevertheless, the usual suspects -- the bloated Utah Education Association -- are hysterically shrieking. Their attitude is best summed up by this stupid comment from their president in the Salt Lake Tribune:

"This isn't the way I teach my fifth-graders the system works," said Kim Campbell, president of the Utah Education Association.

Really? So Legislators, responding to constituent demands, pass a law affecting an issue that is entirely within their consitutional authority and that's not how America works? How is it supposed to work, you ignorant dolt? With teachers like this, it's no wonder our kids don't learn anything. I have a hard time believing this bill will make it worse; we're already at rock bottom.


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