Revisiting the School Vouchers Debate
Rachel Tabachnick printable version print page     Bookmark and Share
Tue Feb 14, 2012 at 12:43:57 PM EST
This weekend I had the pleasure of speaking at the PA Progressive Summit 2012 in Philadelphia.  I will soon post a summary of my presentation including links to websites, video, and other media.  Meanwhile, this post includes a list of links to previous articles and media on a topic of concern to many of the participants of the summit - the national pro-privatization of schools movement, and its efforts to promote school vouchers in Pennsylvania and other states.
Legislation has been temporarily halted in Pennsylvania with a vote against a school voucher bill this past December, but the issue is ongoing in states around the nation. Pennsylvania is currently second in the nation after Florida in public dollars spent and numbers of students in  another type of "school choice" program funded through corporate tax credit programs.  Many of these publicly-funded Pennsylvania and Florida students are attending private religious schools using A Beka and Bob Jones University textbook series that include: attacks on Roman Catholicism and non-Christian religions; revisionist history; promotion of young earth creationism; and rejection and mocking of evolution and global warming.

Links to previous articles and media:
Voucher Advocate Betsy DeVos, Right-Wing Think Tanks Behind Koch-Styled Attack on PA Public Schools
This was the first article in a series on the national pro-voucher movement and is focused on the money and organizations behind the pro-voucher efforts in Pennsylvania including the Students First PAC and the Betsy DeVos-led American Federation for Children.
Pro-Voucher Astroturfing: Campaigns Across Nation Coordinated by DeVos, Funded by a Few Mega-Donors
Part Two in this series tracks millions of dollars contributed to American Federation for Childrens' Indiana PAC in 2010, and then distributed to pro-voucher efforts in several states.
Betsy DeVos Announces PA Governor Tom Corbett Will Keynote Pro-Voucher National Policy Summit
The article also includes information on the funding of media attacks against a PA Senator opposing the school vouchers bill.
Strategy for Privatizing Public Schools Spelled Out by Dick DeVos in 2002 Heritage Foundation Speech
The article includes a short video clip from Dick DeVos' 2002 speech to the Heritage Foundation about pro-voucher strategy.
Protesters Object to School Privatization Efforts of DeVos, Michelle Rhee and PA and WI Governors
This article was written following my participation in the protests outside the American Federation of Children conference in D.C., which featured Gov. Tom Corbett and Michelle Rhee as speakers. The article includes links to other sources of information on Pennsylvania's school voucher bill.
Prince and DeVos Families at Intersection of Radical Free Market Privatizers and Religious Right
The Prince and DeVos families leading the national pro-privatization of schools effort are also promoting other privatization efforts and funding Religious Right entities.
Vouchers/Tax Credits Funding Creationism, Revisionist History, Hostility Toward Other Religions
Through corporate tax credit programs in Pennsylvania, Florida, and other states, private schools are receiving public dollars.  Many of these schools are using A Beka and Bob Jones University textbook series, teaching Creationism and hostility toward Roman Catholicism and non-Christian religions.
Preview of "School Choice: Tax-Payer Funded Creationism, Bigotry and Bias"
A 34-minute video on Pennsylvania private schools receiving corporate tax credit funding while teaching from textbooks that promote creationism, revisionist history, and  hostility toward Roman Catholicism and non-Christian religions.  The article includes the full 34-minute  video and a 6-minute preview.
Theocratic Libertarianism: Quotes from Gary North, Ludwig von Mises Institute Scholar
This is an indirectly related article with quotes from Christian Reconstructionist Gary North.  These quotes provide a background for understanding the Religious Right's arguments for ending public education.

that readers on this site go to Source Watch's list of state legislators who are members of ALEC and see if their Rep. or Sen. is on that list. It will tell you everything you need to know about what your state legislator is probably going to introduce as bills in your state. Charter schools, tuition tax credits (same as vouchers), anti-environmental regulations and a whole host of other corporate agenda items are written up in "model" bills that legislators just copy and paste, and then introduce.   The more people talk up ALEC and its corporate and wealthy foundation owners' monies flowing into all this, the better informed our citizens will be.

by monarchmom on Wed Feb 15, 2012 at 09:52:16 AM EST

It just came out in the news this morning that the Florida legislature (the conservative faction keeps touting how they're for education and higher education) is making it far harder for adults to finish high school and/or get a GED.  They're putting barriers to taking the courses, including charging tuition. s00?Title=New-State-Legislation-Increases-Difficulty-For-Those-Se eking-Adult-Education-&tc=ar

Plus they're trying to destroy my school (University of South Florida) and create a new Polytechnic where (1) no tenure will be granted and (2) all faculty will be on year-by-year contracts.  They're really working to cut back funding for higher education, while at the same time giving more tax breaks for corporations - those corporations must deny employment to union members to get the new breaks. news00?Title=Republicans-Add-Anti-Union-Rider-To-Tax-Break-Bill- &tc=ar would-cut-usf-budget-a-devastating-58-ar-358274 endetta/1215292

Recent news articles also revealed greater support for "homeschooling", which in this state generally means dominionist brainwashing.  While they say one thing, the legislature's actions speak another - they keep cutting funding for education every year while talking about how an education is the path to a future.  They're also trying to privatize every aspect of services provided by the State (an attempt to privatize the prisons failed last night or this morning).  That attempt to privatize everything includes education.   All of these, of course, are dominionist goals.

What is scary is that people either don't see it, or worse, they think it's a good idea.

by ArchaeoBob on Wed Feb 15, 2012 at 11:02:46 AM EST

Florida currently has the largest "school choice" program with a 175 million dollar corporate tax credit program.  Most of this is for sending students to private schools, and many of these schools use the A Beka and Bob Jones University textbook series.

The public funds involved will most likely increase dramatically if the "Florida Religious Freedom Amendment (8)" is passed in November.  This will remove the restrictions in the Florida Constitution which have prohibited the funding of school vouchers for religious schools.  

by Rachel Tabachnick on Wed Feb 15, 2012 at 02:07:14 PM EST

I am waiting to hear about out-of-state colleges and universities turning down Florida students' homeschooling credits.

by NancyP on Thu Feb 16, 2012 at 07:10:17 PM EST

Laws have been suspended in Pennsylvania by a vote against the school voucher bill this past December, but the issue is ongoing in counties around the country. Tell them about . Pennsylvania is currently second in the nation after Florida wasted public money and student numbers in another type of "school choice" program sponsored by the company's credit programs.

by sarwarmonaf on Sat Sep 28, 2019 at 02:46:33 PM EST

WWW Talk To Action

Cognitive Dissonance & Dominionism Denial
There is new research on why people are averse to hearing or learning about the views of ideological opponents. Based on evaluation of five......
By Frederick Clarkson (374 comments)
Will the Air Force Do Anything To Rein In Its Dynamic Duo of Gay-Bashing, Misogynistic Bloggers?
"I always get nervous when I see female pastors/chaplains. Here is why everyone should as well: "First, women are not called to be pastors,......
By Chris Rodda (198 comments)
The Legacy of Big Oil
The media is ablaze with the upcoming publication of David Grann's book, Killers of the Flower Moon. The shocking non fiction account of the......
By wilkyjr (111 comments)
Gimme That Old Time Dominionism Denial
Over the years, I have written a great deal here and in other venues about the explicitly theocratic movement called dominionism -- which has......
By Frederick Clarkson (101 comments)
History Advisor to Members of Congress Completely Twists Jefferson's Words to Support Muslim Ban
Pseudo-historian David Barton, best known for his misquoting of our country's founders to promote the notion that America was founded as a Christian nation,......
By Chris Rodda (113 comments)
"Christian Fighter Pilot" Calls First Lesbian Air Force Academy Commandant a Liar
In a new post on his "Christian Fighter Pilot" blog titled "BGen Kristin Goodwin and the USAFA Honor Code," Air Force Lieutenant Colonel Jonathan......
By Chris Rodda (144 comments)
Catholic Right Leader Unapologetic about Call for 'Death to Liberal Professors' -- UPDATED
Today, Donald Trump appointed C-FAM Executive Vice President Lisa Correnti to the US Delegation To UN Commission On Status Of Women. (C-FAM is a......
By Frederick Clarkson (126 comments)
Controlling Information
     Yesterday I listened to Russ Limbaugh.  Rush advised listeners it would be best that they not listen to CNN,MSNBC, ABC, CBS and......
By wilkyjr (118 comments)
Is Bannon Fifth-Columning the Pope?
In December 2016 I wrote about how White House chief strategist Steve Bannon, who likes to flash his Catholic credentials when it comes to......
By Frank Cocozzelli (250 comments)
Ross Douthat's Hackery on the Seemingly Incongruous Alliance of Bannon & Burke
Conservative Catholic writer Ross Douthat has dissembled again. This time, in a February 15, 2017 New York Times op-ed titled The Trump Era's Catholic......
By Frank Cocozzelli (64 comments)
`So-Called Patriots' Attack The Rule Of Law
Every so often, right-wing commentator Pat Buchanan lurches out of the far-right fever swamp where he has resided for the past 50 years to......
By Rob Boston (161 comments)
Bad Faith from Focus on the Family
Here is one from the archives, Feb 12, 2011, that serves as a reminder of how deeply disingenuous people can be. Appeals to seek......
By Frederick Clarkson (176 comments)
The Legacy of George Wallace
"One need not accept any of those views to agree that they had appealed to real concerns of real people, not to mindless, unreasoning......
By wilkyjr (70 comments)
Betsy DeVos's Mudsill View of Public Education
My Talk to Action colleague Rachel Tabachnick has been doing yeoman's work in explaining Betsy DeVos's long-term strategy for decimating universal public education. If......
By Frank Cocozzelli (80 comments)
Prince and DeVos Families at Intersection of Radical Free Market Privatizers and Religious Right
This post from 2011 surfaces important information about President-Elect Trump's nominee for Secretary of Education, Betsy DeVos. -- FC Erik Prince, Brother of Betsy......
By Rachel Tabachnick (218 comments)

Respect for Others? or Political Correctness?
The term "political correctness" as used by Conservatives and Republicans has often puzzled me: what exactly do they mean by it? After reading Chip Berlin's piece here-- I thought about what he explained......
MTOLincoln (253 comments)
What I'm feeling now is fear.  I swear that it seems my nightmares are coming true with this new "president".  I'm also frustrated because so many people are not connecting all the dots! I've......
ArchaeoBob (107 comments)
"America - love it or LEAVE!"
I've been hearing that and similar sentiments fairly frequently in the last few days - far FAR more often than ever before.  Hearing about "consequences for burning the flag (actions) from Trump is chilling!......
ArchaeoBob (211 comments)
"Faked!" Meme
Keep your eyes and ears open for a possible move to try to discredit the people openly opposing Trump and the bigots, especially people who have experienced terrorism from the "Right"  (Christian Terrorism is......
ArchaeoBob (165 comments)
More aggressive proselytizing
My wife told me today of an experience she had this last week, where she was proselytized by a McDonald's employee while in the store. ......
ArchaeoBob (163 comments)
See if you recognize names on this list
This comes from the local newspaper, which was conservative before and took a hard right turn after it was sold. Hint: Sarah Palin's name is on it!  (It's also connected to Trump.) ......
ArchaeoBob (169 comments)
Unions: A Labor Day Discussion
This is a revision of an article which I posted on my personal board and also on Dailykos. I had an interesting discussion on a discussion board concerning Unions. I tried to piece it......
Xulon (170 comments)
Extremely obnoxious protesters at WitchsFest NYC: connected to NAR?
In July of this year, some extremely loud, obnoxious Christian-identified protesters showed up at WitchsFest, an annual Pagan street fair here in NYC.  Here's an account of the protest by Pagan writer Heather Greene......
Diane Vera (130 comments)
Capitalism and the Attack on the Imago Dei
I joined this site today, having been linked here by Crooksandliars' Blog Roundup. I thought I'd put up something I put up previously on my Wordpress blog and also at the DailyKos. As will......
Xulon (330 comments)
History of attitudes towards poverty and the churches.
Jesus is said to have stated that "The Poor will always be with you" and some Christians have used that to refuse to try to help the poor, because "they will always be with......
ArchaeoBob (148 comments)
Alternate economy medical treatment
Dogemperor wrote several times about the alternate economy structure that dominionists have built.  Well, it's actually made the news.  Pretty good article, although it doesn't get into how bad people could be (have been)......
ArchaeoBob (90 comments)
Evidence violence is more common than believed
Think I've been making things up about experiencing Christian Terrorism or exaggerating, or that it was an isolated incident?  I suggest you read this article (linked below in body), which is about our great......
ArchaeoBob (214 comments)

More Diaries...

All trademarks and copyrights on this page are owned by their respective companies. Comments, posts, stories, and all other content are owned by the authors. Everything else 2005 Talk to Action, LLC.