Friday, September 14, 2012

Black and for school choice? You must be racist

The American Federation for Children (a lobby group promoting educational voucher programmes and tax credits to enable parents' taxes to follow the school they want their children to attend) reports that the Louisiana Federation of Teachers, an avowed opponent of school choice (presumably because it breaks their dominance of the profession and the single shop approach to negotiating pay) has tweeted that the Black Alliance for Education Options (BAEO), a group of African Americans who also support education vouchers/tax credits for private schools supports teaching that the KKK is good.

Yes.  A pro-Democrat, leftwing union claimed a black educational advocacy organisation endorsed the teaching of racism.

How did it come to this conclusion?  Who knows.  It simply tweeted this...

BAEO has responded and clarified...

Because some private schools enrolled in the program reportedly use texts that may attempt to downplay the awful history of the Ku Klux Klan, LFT (via twitter) called BAEO a "black organization that supports KKK vouchers." This is not only the most ludicrous description of our organization but it is also one of the most unintelligent. 

We unapologetically stand for parental choice. That doesn't mean that we believe every private school is great or that private schools are better than public schools. It simply means that while serious people go about the difficult and long-term work of trying to reform low-performing traditional public schools, we must also give parents real options that allow their children to get a quality education today. We trust that parents, when given the option to choose and when armed with accurate information, will make increasingly better choices for their children.

What I see is an interest group adopting any technique it can to smear those presenting options that threaten their position of privilege and lack of accountability.

The idea that a state monopoly on education and restrictions on access to schools only in a local area is good for children or what parents want is ludicrous, and it is little short of disgusting that teachers' unions - whose primary interest is to increase the pay, reduce the workload and reduce the accountability of teachers - continue to prey upon the vulnerable, weak and poor to demand that they maintain this monopoly on teaching their kids.  They fear new schools, dynamic ones, ones that pay teachers on performance, that hire teachers that aren't unionised into their collective gang, and that parents like them.  They fear not being able to lobby politicians to decide what those schools teach or what they should be paid.  They fear that, when given their own money back or given a way to transfer their taxes from public schools to other options, that they wont choose the options the teachers want monopolised.

They'll find every example they can of non-public schools not delivering the best performance, whilst ignoring the same of their monopoly schools, they will constantly claim that it's all about the children, that this is all they care about, all the time implying that they and the state knows best, not parents.  

Nothing is more important in pushing freedom and changing the culture of modern liberal democracies today than taking schools out of the hands of these peddlers of protectionism, hatred and statism.  That's why they, and their friends in politics (e.g. the Green Party in NZ), are so keen to oppose them.

For they argue private schools should remain for the rich, for the poor kids shouldn't get to go to a school which declares that individual achievement and excellence are the primary goal that should be strived for.

After all, what could be worse that kids from backgrounds that can't afford to pay taxes and private school fees, stand up and proudly live lives that aren't about dependence.

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