SB193

I am not sure how any of our representatives in Concord can, in good conscience, support the SB193 education “voucher” bill that would divert taxpayer money to religious, private and home schools with no accountability requirements.

I have spent several hours this month contacting representatives regarding this bill and am appalled at the reasons that some of the defenders of this bill are offering. Here are some of the more outlandish arguments that I have heard along with my thoughts on them:

“Public schools shouldn’t have a monopoly on education.”

So should we examine why town hall has a “monopoly” on issuing dog licenses or that our military has a “monopoly” on defending our country? Public schools are public entities, created to serve the public good. To compare them to corporations that are subject to anti-trust laws is ludicrous.

“Parents should get their tax money back to put towards private schools if they feel that their children can get an education that suits them better in a private school”.

So if I want better security in my home does that mean that I can get a credit from my town’s police budget to hire a private security firm to come and guard my place? If I don’t like the current selection at my town library should they have to divert some of their funds to pay for my audio book subscription? How about the town pool? Maybe my neighbors can pitch in to help buy my next pool liner if I prefer my own pool to the one maintained by the recreation department.

“If our public school teachers had more competition then our students would be doing better”.

The fact is that New Hampshire’s public school students score score near the top of the charts by national standards. In fact, US News ranks New Hampshire 4th in the nation in education. It seems to me that SB193 is an ill conceived solution to a non existent problem.