At the commencement of President Obama’s first term in 2009, he tried to shut down the D.C. Opportunity Scholarship program. A highly successful charter school program, with a 91% high school graduation rate. Our first African-American president wanted to send the D.C. Opportunity students, of which 95% are black, back to failing public schools. John Boehner deserves credit for winning at least one congressional battle against President Obama. He held firm on preserving the D.C. voucher program.
This president cares so little for the educationally disadvantaged that he continued to try to dismantle the voucher program every year of his two terms. Mr. Obama promised hope and change but offered hopelessness. He tried to relegate poverty-stricken children to a substandard education while sending his children to elite private schools. If that was change we could believe in, no wonder few Americans still believe in him.
Even our biased media occasionally acknowledges that the Democratic Party sleeps with the National Education Association. Their relationship, financed with taxpayer money, is a Democrat sacred cow. President Obama should be in the business of protecting students, not the NEA. Unfortunately, K-12 students do not vote, pay dues, or fill Democratic coffers.
Donald Trump supports vouchers and school choice. He wants to put the educational power back into parental hands, which is intolerable to both Democrats and the teacher unions. They claim that unlimited vouchers will lead to school closures, thereby worsening the situation for the children left behind.
Let’s apply their logic this way. If your neighborhood market started selling old meat, would you continue shopping there? Of course not. You would find a store that sold fresh meat. You wouldn’t even allow the possibility of the store closing down to prevent you from shopping elsewhere. Since you will not sacrifice your children’s health, why would you sacrifice their education?
A store that wants to stay in business will quickly find a new meat supplier. Likewise, if poor schools want to stay in business, they will fire poor teachers and administrators and abandon failing policies. They will hire dedicated teachers and exemplary administrators and introduce successful programs that enhance student performance. Otherwise, they will close down, as they should.
Parents must be allowed to use the same common sense they use when shopping for food to shop for schools. That is possible only if parents have control. Voucher programs empower parents, not the teacher union. Democrats need to understand that a government by the people can work only if the people maintain their right to govern. Robotic loyalty works great for robots, not for people.