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Have you spoken out against vouchers yet?
Email the Senate Now!
THE PETITION BELOW!
here to send emails and faxes
urging opposition by Washington D.C. City Council and
School Board members!
September 10th - Email the Senate Now!
NSBA/Zogby poll showed that a majority of D.C.
residents oppose vouchers.
our press releases.
Sign Our Petition Here!
"We, the undersigned, support
the use of public tax dollars only for accountable public
I have done my part. Please let me know how this turns
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more about vouchers by clicking
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Research Shows That Vouchers
DON’T Improve Student Achievement.
Vouchers DON’T Improve School Choice for DC Families.
Vouchers DON’T Guarantee Admission to Private Schools or
Protect Against Discrimination.
Vouchers DON’T Require School Accountability or Student
Vouchers DON’T Cover All the Costs of Most Private Schools.
Vouchers DO Take Away Money from Public Schools (traditional
D.C. Voucher Promises:
More Myth than Reality
by Marc Egan (Prepared for
the Coalition for Accountable Public Schools)
Myth: Vouchers let parents choose their child’s school
Reality: Private schools, not parents, decide whether to
admit a student. They can decide how many students they will
take, and can discriminate based on a child’s academic or
disciplinary record. (“Obstacle Course,” Education Week,
June 9, 1999; “Questions About the School Voucher System,”
USA Today, June 28, 2002.)
Myth: Vouchers help
children escape failing schools
Reality: Most of the students in Cleveland’s voucher program
never even attended public schools – many already went to
private schools before having their tuition subsidized by
taxpayers. The wealthy individuals and foundations that
bankroll the voucher movement want vouchers for students
regardless of income – promising help to low-income children
is a smokescreen. (“Cleveland School Vouchers: Where the
Students Come From,” Policy Matters Ohio, 2001).
African-Americans strongly support vouchers
Reality: African-Americans have overwhelmingly voted against
voucher proposals and polls show they strongly prefer other
education reforms – like smaller class sizes. In California,
68% of African-Americans rejected a voucher proposal in
2000. The same day, 78% of African-Americans in Michigan
rejected a voucher plan. (Exit Polls, CNN.con, Nov. 7, 2000;
“The Voucher Vote,” Palm Beach Post, Nov. 13, 2000.)
Myth: Vouchers improve
students’ academic achievement
Reality: Credible evidence proves this is false, and in some
cases, the opposite is true. The official studies on the
Milwaukee and Cleveland voucher programs “found little or no
difference in voucher and public school students’
performance.” The Cleveland study also found that students
who went to private schools that opened in response to
vouchers scored lower than public school students in all
subjects. (“School Vouchers: Publicly Funded Programs in
Cleveland and Milwaukee,” U.S. GAO, Aug. 2001; “Vouchers and
Student Achievement: A Review of the Evidence,” National
School Boards Association, 2000.)
Myth: Vouchers will
help children with the greatest needs
Reality: Voucher programs disproportionately exclude
children with disabilities. Such children were “actively
counseled out of the (Cleveland) program,” an Ohio education
(“Study Finds Skimpy Evidence on Vouchers,” USA Today, Dec.
6, 2001; “Whose Choice?” series, Akron Beacon-Journal, Dec.
Myth: Vouchers will
save taxpayers money
Reality: Vouchers are likely to do just the opposite by
requiring taxpayers to pay for two school systems – one
public and one private. The voucher plan that California
voters rejected in 2000 would have cost taxpayers $3.2
billion to pay for vouchers for students already attending
(“Are Vouchers the Way to Improve California’s Schools?”
California Budget Project, Aug. 2000)
Myth: Voucher schools
Reality: Voucher programs eliminate public accountability
because voucher schools do not answer to the public; do not
reveal how they spend tax dollars; do not have to hire
highly qualified teachers (as public schools now must do);
and do not have to make students’ academic results public.
Vouchers will improve the public schools by creating
Reality: This claim is based more on speculation than
evidence as a recent study confirmed. Vouchers do take away
millions of public dollars from public schools and give them
to private schools that play by different rules than the
public schools. For example, private schools select their
students; public schools accept every child. (“Rhetoric
Versus Reality,” RAND Education, 2001)