The Limits of Public School Choice

Public school choice–that is, choice among government-run schools–is a good thing. It’s an element of overall school choice. It’s practiced in many states, including Kansas. But note that public school choice isn’t quite what you think it is. Opponents of full school choice (which would include vouchers) say “But what about schools that won’t take new students?” That objection, we guess, is meant to demonstrate the superiority of today’s public (government-run) schools.

As it turns out, though, that public schools can accept new students from outside their district lines, but they don’t have to. That’s the case in Kansas. It’s also the case in Missouri, where one case has gotten a lot of attention. We’ll turn the telling of the story over to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, which tells the story of one women looking for an alternative for her children.

Public school choice is good, but not enough.

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