Wednesday, August 05, 2009

Sounding Off On Education

I believe that the best way to reform our national education system is to get the federal government out of the education business.

I am in favor of dismantling the federal Department of Education. Who do you think knows better how to educate our children in Washington state? A Washington D.C. bureaucrat or a local agency?

I believe that we should return the important issue of education back to the state and local communities because they know what the educational needs of our children are.

However, since I can tell you that almost as fact, this will never happen. The Department of Education will probably never be dismantled. Not in our lifetime anyway. So for now we have to figure out ways to work within the current system.

School vouchers are a great start to getting on the right track. Parents should be given the choice as to where they want their children educated. I do not believe that school vouchers undermine the public education system. I believe that school vouchers will foster healthy competition so that even public schools will force themselves to have better teachers, better curriculum, better test scores, and ultimately, better all around education.


  1. For the longest time I thought that the best way to tackle education would be for the federal government to come in and upgrade all school facilities to the same level and give each school district 5 to 10 years to improve the education in the area. Districts that failed would be taken over by the federal government. There is a part of me that still likes this idea, but I doubt that it would work.

    While I know that it is flawed, I think that doing away with the Department of Education would be a terrible idea. I am a firm believer in public schools and thus do not support the idea of doing away with public education. There are some things that should not be left up to the market and education is one of those things. We have a duty to our children, and by our, I mean the collective our as in our society, to provide them with a top notch education. Sadly at the moment, we are failing in this task. Our teachers are burdened by red tape, far too low pay, and parents who often have not done enough to raise their children. There is nothing really that we can do on a governmental level to fix the bad parents, but we can correct the red tape and pay grade situations.

    Bill Bradley laid out a really good plan for education in his book The New American Story that I think would work quite well. Whatever is done, we need educators and not bureaucrats or labor unions running the system. On that we agree Steve.

  2. Perhaps I was not clear on this. I am not an advocate of completely doing away with public education. As far as public education, I am saying that we leave the federal government out of it completely and let the states handle it.

    I believe in school vouchers because I believe that parents should have a choice where to send their children to school and that one of our obligations is to make the choice feasible for them.

  3. My only fear with taking the federal government out of it completely is that there wouldn’t be any commonality in basic standards used across the states.

    I’m not a fan of vouchers because I think that my tax dollars should not only help pay for my kids education, but also for the kids who live down the road and on the other side of town.

  4. Your tax dollars would still be helping to fund other childrens education. It would just be helping to fund their parents choice of where they go to school.