Vouchers and Equal Opportunity

Since the 1960s, critics of public education in the United States have sought a variety of remedies to provide students, especially poor students, with greater access to quality K–12 education. One suggested avenue for reform is the deregulation of public education by dramatically altering the manner by which schools—public and private—are funded. The belief that markets are a better, fairer, and more democratic way to organize schooling has captured the attention of policymakers, parents, and the public. One prominent strategy for deregulation is the school voucher. Voucher plans are any system of certificate or cash payments by the government that enables public school students to attend schools of their choice, private or public. Vouchers, generally, have a fixed value and are redeemed at the time ...

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