So the Conservative Christian Cult are arguing that corporations are people with deeply held religious beliefs. And, as such, should be able to “opt out” of the contraception mandate of the ACA. They are now arguing that Public Education is a “handout” to poor people and should be privatized. In order to make their point, they are pushing vigorously for “voucher programs” which will take tax dollars earmarked for public education and offer them as sort of “scholarships” to private schools. Of course, their argument is that public education is failing.
In 2012 Bobby Jindal introduced such a voucher program in Louisiana. One problem, only about 8,000 poor students in the entire state were admitted into these private schools. Furthermore, the data from the LEAP testing done each year showed that those students in the private schools scored drastically lower (40% at or slightly above grade level) than the state average (69%).
Not to be outdone, Milwaukee Wisconsin also has a voucher program. Research shows that just 13 percent of voucher students scored proficient in math and 11 percent made the bar in reading this spring. That’s worse on both counts than students in the city’s public schools. It would appear that vouchers do not improve the education of students, but rather drag it down. How could this be? In the past, private schools had a reputation for providing excellent education. So what happened?
What happened was that many of these private schools have adopted the A Beka Book curriculum. I already wrote once about how they teach creationism rather than evolution. They even villanize scientists and mathematicians. But, that is just the tip of the iceberg. Here are some wonderful things your children are being taught if they attend a school that uses these text books.
According to their book titled: America The Land That I love In Christian Perspective the following are taught as “fact”:
The Great Depression was made up in order to spread Socialism. That’s right, the Great Depression didn’t happen at all. It was a left leaning propaganda ploy to spread socialism in America. The book says:
“Some people wanted to create an imaginary crisis in order to move the country toward socialism. They spread rumors of bank mortgage foreclosures and mass evictions from farms, homes and apartments. But local banks did all in their power to keep their present tenants. The number of people out of work in the 1930s averaged about 15 percent of the work force; thus 85 percent continued to work. Most had to take a pay cut, but prices also declined during the Depression, enabling people to buy more for their money.”
What’s more, in the Propaganda section, students learn:
In 1939, John Steinbeck wrote The Grapes of Wrath. This novel described the plight of the Okies, farm families from Western Oklahoma who went to California in search of jobs. Most families who went west did not experience the hardships that Steinbeck presented in his novel. Steinbeck openly supported labor violence and strikes instigated by socialist groups to keep the Okies from earning a living as migrant farm laborer in California…. Socialist photographers and artists produced misleading pictures of the… mountaineers of Appalachia. These mountaineers did not have the modern conveniences of homes in the town or cities but they did not consider themselves to be poor. The Depression actually had little effect on their lives.
They also teach that Carl Marx and Darwin brought the German people Hitler and the Nazis. The book teaches, “as a socialist, Hitler believed that the government should own the nation’s industries and take responsibility for its people.” Through socialism, the book tells us, Hitler became “the absolute dictator of Germany. By embracing socialism, the German people lost their freedoms to a tyrant.” They fail to mention that Hitler did not nationalize German industries and that many German Industrialists got very rich during his reign.
Freedom of Speech was the Gateway to Porn. According to them, “Pornographic films and books were legalized under the guise of ‘freedom of speech’.” So even if you think Freedom of Speech is a good thing, according to these texts, it is really a freedom that is a dangerous gateway.
Other wonderful things they teach include little tidbits like the Clintons were Draft-Dodging, Economic-Crisis-Creating, Joint Presidents, or that George W. Bush was an awesome President because he invaded Iraq and saved mid-born babies, or that 2008 was a terrible year for America because Barak Obama a Marxist-Nazi-Muslim-atheist-homosexuality-approving Kenyan, was elected president.
Finally, private schools are not required to provide special education to anyone with physical or mental disabilities. Therefore, they don’t have to take these children into their schools. Nor, are they required to accept anyone who is not a member of their church group. Or, if they do accept them, they charge significantly higher tuition. Naturally, they don’t have to accept LGBT students either. On top of all of that, if a student doesn’t measure up to their “standards” they can refuse to let them back in.
All the while, public school funding is being drained by the voucher programs. Because the money intended to provide public education to everyone is being used as “scholarships” for these private schools, up to 65% of public school funding is going to voucher programs in many states. That leaves practically nothing for everyone else.
If you want your children to attend one of these “so-called schools” by all means send them there. But, I find it very offensive to expect me to pay for their lack of education. Private means Private. Private Schools are to be funded by students, not the tax payer who may or may not agree with their “ideology”. Stop voucher programs wherever you can and give all of our children the opportunity of a good education!