Monday, December 3, 2007

Getting Warmed Up for the Education Debate

Marginal Revolution points out that Kyle and I have been beaten to the punch by two Australian bloggers. Still, the show must go on. The first post strikes a chord fairly similar to my position, though obviously in the context of Aussie government and on a different issue than Kyle and I will be discussing. Specifically, the Aussie debate centers on a question that Kyle and I are, for our purposes, presupposing: that public schools exist and should continue to exist. The second part of the Aussie debate is here. Of course, I will be arguing that at a minimum public schools need competition from the private sector and, as importantly, parents should have a choice as to the curriculum their child learns. The recent (ongoing?) fiasco in Kansas I think should make the reasons for this pretty clear. In other words, if I want my child to learn that the world was created a few billion years ago and that humans evolved from apes, and that this is uncontroverted fact, I shouldn't be forced to pay to send my child to a school where they are taught that this is not uncontroverted fact or that there is scientific evidence that in fact a Flying Spaghetti Monster created the world 6000 years ago.

This isn't to say I'm in favor of the immediate abolition of public schools. Just that I think the state-created monopoly (or effective monopoly) on education is, shall we say, a bit troubling.