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Transcript of School Vouchers
School voucher systems afford lower-income students the opportunity to attend challenging private schools previously suited for only those who can afford them.
African-American students who take advantage of school vouchers have a significantly better chance of attending 4-year universities than they would otherwise. (What Works Clearinghouse, 1997, pp. 1-2)
One study demonstrated that due to past legal battles concerning the establishment clause of the constitution each state would have to decide the legality of school vouchers on a state-by-state basis. (McCarthy, 2007, p. 357)
This means that passing a voucher system would be costly, time-consuming, and may not be a viable option for each state.
No Improved Achievement
In a study of the impact of the school voucher system in Cleveland, there was no change in achievement among similar students (Plucker, 2007, p. 85)
With improved achievement being a significant benefit to the plan, there will need to be more significant evidence before it can be implemented.
Option for All?
Voucher systems are usually chosen by lottery.
Assuming they are fairly administered, they still leave out the best education options for all students
While there are definite positive affects of a school voucher system, not all students in a given school system will have the opportunity to benefit from such a system.
If we are serious about investigating voucher systems, we must try to apply them on a more universal level to see whether they would have widespread positive effects.
McCarthy, M. (2007). Determining the Legality of School Vouchers: Are State Courts the New Venue?. Journal Of Education Finance, 32(3), 352-372
Plucker, J. A., Makel, M. C., Hansen, J. A., & Muller, P. A. (2007). Achievement Effects of the Cleveland Voucher Program on High Ability Elementary School Students. Journal Of School Choice, 1(4), 77-88.
Pons, M. (2002, April 1). School Vouchers: The Emerging Track Record. Retrieved June 1, 2014, from http://www.nea.org/home/16970.htm
What are School Vouchers?
Vouchers are payments given directly to parents to choose a school (private) of their choice for their children
Real voucher programs have been instituted in Milwaukee, Cleveland and State-wide in Florida (Pons, 2002, para. 1)
Chang-Ho, C. (2007). Religion, Parental Choice, and School Vouchers in Urban Parochial Schools: The Case of Five Schools in Southern California. Journal of Research on Christian Education, 16(2).
Forster, G. (2011). A Win-Win Solution: The Empirical Evidence on School Vouchers. The Foundation for Educational Choice.
What Works Clearinghouse. (1997). The Effects of School Vouchers on College Enrollment: Experimental Evidence from New York City. The Institute of Education Sciences.
Voucher systems have been shown to positively impact public schools by providing competition and forcing them to improve.
18 out of 19 studies where voucher systems exist have shown that public schools have improved since the introduction of vouchers to those school districts. (Forster, 2011, p. 15).
Studies have shown that parents are much more satisfied with their children's schooling when they have chosen through the voucher program than when they have not. (54% vs. 27%) (Forster, 2011, p. 7).
Religion and morality prove to be a significant reason that parents favor a voucher system. A 2001 study showed that 75% of parents who supported the implementation of a voucher system did so because it would allow them greater freedom and financial capacity to send their children to schools that would teach them "better values." (Chang-Ho, 2007, para. 10.).