Sunday, January 20, 2008

Privatizing Schooling

A quote from the testimony given by the executive director of WPA on Wednesday regarding AB 697:

The basic idea of trying to privatize education by using statutes and public funds is a contradiction and an oxymoron.

The testimony goes on to explain how privatizing education is considered a good thing by conservatives. But how can education be privatized by making more laws about it, by monitoring what goes on in private homes, by making families more dependent on government, by increasing government authority, and by increasing government spending? Think about that for a minute. Do those things sound like privatization?


  1. In answer to your question I have to say, no, they do not sound like privatization. Having been at the Assembly Committee meeting I would also have to say that the gentleman, although passionate, did not make a good case for himself and I found his testimony rather contradicting. In my opinion he totally missed the point. If the state goes against allowing parents the right to chose a virtual education based on it being too much like a home school environment and parents are not "certified" enough to teach their children effectively, it places his group at risk for educational litigation next. The will more than likely state that such a law is to ensure that the educational needs of every child in the state are met.

  2. The state is not saying that parents as teacher aides in public e-schools are "too much like a homeschool environment." The problem is that the parents are acting as unlicensed teachers in a public school. There is virtual education available to those parents who want it privately. But the virtual charter schools are PUBLIC schools and are answerable to the public. They are paid for with tax dollars and are regulated by the government.

    The law now requires that the state provide a free education to the children of the state. The govt regulates the public schools. But parents can choose private education instead. The law does not require that the "educational needs of every child in the state be met." It just requires attendance at an educational program, be it public or private.

    There is a humongous difference between public and private schools. I think many parents who've chosen public e-schools for their children have lost sight of that difference.