Thursday, January 22, 2009

Research supports school choice options

A research report by the chairman of the University of Kentucky Economics Department out today confirms a dire need for the Commonwealth's General Assembly to embrace charter schools and voucher programs for better education outcomes.

Dr. John Garen says letting bureaucrats wield power at the expense of taxpayers and future generations of Kentuckians is a counterproductive use of public resources.

"The reliability of our own CATS testing system is increasingly doubted, with a widening gap between what CATS and federal testing deem proficient and recent test-grade auditing indicating inflated scores," Garen said. "Despite all of these problems with state-directed reform, the Kentucky Legislature continues to propose laws that attempt to micromanage schools from Frankfort."

Dr. Garen sited specific data supporting his conclusion that school choice programs are quite effective at serving students, help improve public schools, and have worked where they have been tried.

"Judging by their popularity, parents seem satisfied with school-choice programs across the country. This fact alone ought to speak volumes to policymakers," Garen said.

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