Vouchers were once thought to be a dead issue in US education. Voters have turned them down again and again. The public dislikes them so much that even Republicans are afraid to use the V word. Instead, voucher programs–always enacted by legislation, not by voter referendum–are always called, euphemistically, “opportunity scholarships.”
When GOP governors like Mitch Daniels in Indiana and Bobby Jindal in Louisiana promote vouchers (er, excuse me, “opportunity scholarships”), they claim they are doing it to “save poor minority students from failing schools.” Who knew the GOP had become the party devoted to poor minority kids while slashing the budget for education and social programs?
It turns out that vouchers are antithetical to equity. They do not save poor minority kids. They increase segregation. Schools choose and skim. Vouches exacerbate inequality.