Friday Freakout: Do It to Your Own Children, Not Other People’s

Today’s Friday Freakout comes from the heated comments section of Diane Ravitch’s blog titled,“How Embarrassing for the Friedman Foundation.” We responded to her blog post here, but something very interesting happened in the comments section between Diane and school choice supporter Greg. See the exchange below, then read our final thoughts.

public schools don't benefit from competition
Two of the most egregious statements Diane made were:

1. “There is zero evidence that public schools improve when they compete.” 

Actually, 23 empirical studies have been conducted to determine just that. Twenty-two showed competition from school choice programs caused positive improvement in public schools. One study showed no effect. What Diane must have meant to say was, “There is zero evidence that public schools do worse when they compete.” How do we know those studies are legitimate? Sourcing for every study can be found in our “A Win Win Solution: The Empirical Evidence on School Choice.” If that’s not enough, even the Economic Policy Institute, an anti-voucher group, shows competition driven by Milwaukee’s voucher program caused the city’s public schools to improve.

2.  “Do it to your own children, not other people’s children.”

Which is worse: To give all children a choice to attend a school they think fits them better, or to take away choice from all children, so the ones who wish they could leave must stay…that is unless their parents are wealthy enough?

In the end, we hope you found this exchange interesting. We surely did. And remember to please share our Friday Freakouts on social media using #FridayFreakout.