State Impact Indiana posted a 3-question interview with Tony Bennett, Indiana’s Superintendent of Public Instruction, in which Bennett makes a statement that seems to me of massive importance and one that has yet to really be addressed or understood. I have highlighted this crucial detail of the effect of the school voucher programs.
Q: In some many cases, students using the voucher program are attending schools with comparable, often low test scores. How do you respond to this?
Let me give you an analogy. Lets talk about schools that are highly rated like schools in Carmel. Just because a school is highly rated doesn’t mean it meets the needs of all the students in that school. here may have been aspects of going to those new schools that parents felt better met the needs of their child. This entire process was not about bad schools or good schools. This was about giving children and families the choices they need to pursue educational opportunities that meet their needs. That’s how I always answered the question about moving to good schools or bad schools. In my opinion this is taking down the geographic boundaries that have in many instances encapsulated students into specific school settings which may not meet their needs.
What are geographic boundaries when it comes to schools? When it comes to cities? When it comes to neighborhoods?
These are our communities–this geography is what BINDS us, or what SHOULD bind us.
Our lack of concern for our neighbor; our heavy reliance on technology as a “table-for-one” mentality; and our refusal to address our human dignity when it comes to poverty and intolerance is SERVED by this kind of education “option.”
This is freedom to choose not to care about your neighbor. This will become the freedom to for capital to “fly” out of your neighborhood and impoverish your communities.
Divide and conquer, as usual, for market capitalists.