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A Study Of Public School Choice

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A Study Of Public School Choice Page 1
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Parents and students are very unhappy with the public education offered to them by the government of United States. 51 percent of respondents to the latest Gallup Poll rated their community's public schools with a grade of C or less, and 66 percent said that local schools had either stayed the same or gotten worse in the last five years. The result of these feelings is a demand for reform. Local, state and federal agencies create initiatives, recommendations and policies in hopes of meeting the public's demand for a system that can effectively educate our students. Private and government-formed commissions continually present proposals ranging from additional school days to increased discipline. A current favorable prospect is the idea of public school choice through vouchers.
Public education, a monopoly-like system, generally dictates the specific school that each child will attend within his or her district. Under new choice plans, parents would gain the power to choose their child's school, either within the district, or within the state, depending on the plan. Proponents of choice detail many positive results of the plan, which will be explained, analyzed and considered in the written result of my research.
Choice plans have been written in so many different ways, that to cover them all would be a tremendous undertaking. In order to centralize my research , I will be discussing what seems to be the most common form of school choice: choice within a district or state, limited to public schools. (While choice plans including vouchers for private schools are being seriously pursued, their success in passing through the legislative system has not been extremely successful throughout the United States.) Choice plans are designed to bring about many positive results and gains for students.
One result is an end to perpetually guaranteed enrollment for each school within a district. No longer would principals and teachers be allowed to maintain the status quo. Schools with unmotivational teachers, low test scores, poor discipline, or high drop-out rates would now have to change their ways in order to compete for the enrollment that they need to keep their doors open. With choice, education would become a public good in the competitive marketplace. Competition leads to improved learning for students.

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