On the 14th of January, Jay Matthews asked an interesting question, Suburbs too good for charters?  In his column, Matthews wonders why they are so few charter schools in the suburbs.  Here is how he begins.

Why are there so few public charter schools in the Washington suburbs? It seems obvious. Both Virginia and Maryland let local school boards decide if somebody, or anybody, is going to get a charter to compete with their own schools. It is a conflict of interest as bad as it would be to let the Post overrule any new newspapers in the region.

Whenever we put our government in charge of something, we create a monopoly.  When we put government in charge of education, at that moment we wrested from parents their control over the education of their children.  Morality and ethics demand that parents exercise responsibility over their children’s education.  Nonetheless,we have so constructed the system,  the public school system, that it does not permit parents to exercise proper control.  Politicians decide who teaches children and what teachers teach.  

What happens when we create a monopoly and separate of authority from responsibility?  We see what we are seeing, a slowly unfolding disaster.  With each succeeding generation, when children reach adulthood, they are less and less ready to assume adult responsibilities.   So long as we have a public school monopoly, America’s schools will continue to deteriorate.  

Our children and children’s children will be less ready than we were.  Because we did not look ahead and consider the inevitable consequences, we will have failed them.

Read Matthew’s column.  Then please go ask your school board members and your representatives to Virginia’s General Assembly these questions: 

  • Why are there so few public charter schools in the Washington suburbs? 
  • Why are they so afraid to give parents a choice?
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