National School Choice Week? And the kickoff was a “party,” all flash, no substance?
That noise you heard was dry heaves.
The lies? That school “choice” is “about racial justice and equal opportunity,” that the aim is to make public schools “stronger,” that it supports teachers and their work, that it’s about parents getting what “they want,” and that the privatization movement is bipartisan and secular. If you’ve been paying attention to NOLA schools, you’ve seen these lies in action.
But ALEC isn’t the only right-wing supporter of School Choice Week. Conservative organizations like the Goldwater Institute, New Jersey Tea Party Caucus, Heritage Foundation, Alliance for School Choice, Friedman Foundation, Heartland Institute, Reason Institute, and many other right-wing groups are also behind this week’s school choice celebrations. Despite some liberal support, its primary backers are deeply conservative activists whose goal is to dissolve public education in the United States. That’s why school choice bipartisanship is a myth – that is, its advocates use their few liberal supporters to obscure the real political base.
“School choice” covers up the real movement, the privatization of public schools, dismissing as irrelevant the resegregation of public schools and the de-professionalization of the K-12 teaching profession. No one asks who actually benefits from this privatization. If they did, they’d see it’s not teachers, parents, or their children. [No, your child's school being a great fit for your family does not mean that privatization "works." It means you got lucky.]