The Cost of a Job That Can’t Be Done
It is certainly worth reminding ourselves that parents, as a group, bear some of the blame — most of it — for children doing poorly in school. But inasmuch as parents don’t draw government salaries, receive paid days off, or claim retirement benefits for their efforts, the public rightly makes schools an area of particular concern.
The problem that teachers’ advocates face in attempting to redirect attention toward parents is that two obvious questions emerge: If the job is undoable, why do we pay so much for it? And what can we do to maximize the benefit of the dollars that we spend? Not surprisingly, folks at Anchor Rising would tend to suggest that the best solution is to increase opportunities for teachers, students, and parents who desire success, and to increase consequences for those who do not. (Ah, there’s the rub.)
A school choice program, combined with merit-based teacher compensation, would accomplish both.