Monday, August 13, 2012

Opponent to Education Reform Casts Parents as Rapists, Abusers

The defense of the educational status quo in the education debate has hit a new low: saying families cannot have school choice because parents “starve, beat, tie up, and rape their children.” 

This is about rock bottom for anti-reformers.

The comments come from a blog post from Diane Ravitch, in which she published an anonymous letter from a Louisiana teacher on why parents should not have school choice. Beyond criticizing parents of some of the worst crimes imaginable against their kids, the anonymous teacher argues offers no solution to the fact that thousands of children in Louisiana are stuck in failing schools.

But despite the teacher's assertions, here's the truth:

  • Parents know best.  They know their children.  They provide for their children.  They read them stories at night.  And they pass down their morals, ethics, and ideals to their children.  And when their children are stuck in a poor-performing schools—or are struggling academically in any school—they stand up and demand high-quality educational options.
  •  Like doctors—teachers are professionals who have (in their own way) saved the lives of millions of children.  But where this letter’s argument fails—and school choice wins—is the reality that a patient can chose the doctor and treatment that meets his or her needs.  Patients are not stuck with a persistently poor-performing doctor because of their ZIP code.  Patients have the right and obligation to find the right fit for medical treatment.  So do parents when it comes to educating their children.
  • As Dave Murray points out, we cannot oppose educational options because of the small percentage of bad parents who do abuse their children.  As Murray writes, there is a great public institution for these parents: prison.
One has to wonder why this teacher has a strong distaste for parents and why Diane Ravitch is listening to him.

- American Federation for Children | Alliance for School Choice, MSG

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