In "A Real Education Outrage", the WSJ opined today:
President Obama's speech to students this week got plenty of attention, and many conservatives looked foolish by fretting about "indoctrination." They would have done far more good joining those who protested on Tuesday against the President's decision to shut down a school voucher program for 1,700 low-income kids in Washington, D.C. ...
The nationwide black/white achievement gap has grown in recent years. ...Yet the Obama Administration, in deference to teachers unions that oppose school choice, is shuttering a voucher program that is narrowing the racial learning gap.
"The D.C. voucher program has proven to be the most effective education policy evaluated by the federal government's official education research arm so far," writes the Education Department's chief evaluator Patrick Wolf in the current issue of Education Next. ...
Meanwhile, Mr. Obama sends his own daughters to the best private school in the District.
This is the same president who defended a publicly-sponsored health insurance option in his speech last night to a joint session of Congress with the following:
So let me set the record straight. My guiding principle is, and always has been, that consumers do better when there is choice and competition. That's how the market works.
Yet our president has eliminated rather than embraced competition where it has proven to help our students. He has thrown his "guiding principle" under the public school bus for no other reason than the teachers unions' fear of the competition fostered by school vouchers. He ended his speech this week to the nation's school students with:
Your families, your teachers, and I are doing everything we can to make sure you have the education you need... I expect you to put your best effort into everything you do. I expect great things from each of you. So don't let us down - don't let your family or your country or yourself down. Make us all proud. I know you can do it.
Somehow, Obama's wonderful speeches ring hollow.