In Pennsylvania, State Senator Anthony Williams has proposed a voucher bill for education. At a public meeting on the subject I asked him the following question: “I teach in a high poverty urban school. I see over 100 students per day and I am expected to teach every one of them. I can’t choose who to teach and who not to teach. If I choose not to teach the difficult students, charges would be made I am not doing my job. How Senator Williams can you defend doing your job when education vouchers would benefit so few of the students I teach.”
He couldn’t answer. Instead he became angry and yelled about how I could teach anywhere I want because of my seniority and how the system works. (I guess he figures I choose to teach in a high poverty violent school, …oh yeah, I have made that choice). Then he railed about how so many teachers live outside the city and send their children to suburban schools. He couldn’t answer the question and announced he would not debate me. The fact is Senator Williams by reacting angrily and changing the subject had already lost the debate.
Education vouchers are a bad idea for Pennsylvania just as they have failed in Washington D.C., Cleveland, and Milwaukee. This isn’t just me talking, this is the research which can be found in news reports at the following websites:
Of course Senator Williams was also unable to provide or cite the studies he kept referring to that he claims prove vouchers work. He changed the subject, but at least didn’t lie.