Many opponents of parental choice assert that using educational tax dollars for anything but public schools would be essentially unprecedented. Actually, public funds have been used to support students in private schools in a variety of well-accepted ways, especially when those students require additional resources.
The Washington Post editorial board points out that special-needs students whose public schools cannot meet their needs are able to access public funding to attend a private school that can. And private schools also receive money for certain supplies, professional training, technology, and Title I services. As the Post states, “As long as the money is seen as benefiting the child, it is deemed a proper, even desirable, use of public dollars.”
Which brings up a good question with regards to the DC Opportunity Scholarships:
If a school system can’t educate a child — whether because of acute special needs or its own historical failings — why should that child not have options for a ‘free appropriate public education’? “
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