In a preview of the kind of shenanigans we can expect when school choice finally arrives in Kentucky, teachers unions have been working overtime to kill the D.C. Opportunity Scholarship pilot project in the nation’s capital. The five-year-old program has made it possible for 1,700 low-income children – 99 percent of whom are black or Hispanic – to attend private schools this year alone.
The unions succeeded in getting the Education Department to sit on a performance review showing that children attending private schools with the aid of the scholarships are reading nearly a half-grade ahead of their peers while Congress debated its future in March.
In its scathing editorial taking the program’s opponents to task for their tactics, the Wall Street Journal said “it’s bad enough” that the politicians on Capitol Hill are “killing a program that parents and love and is closing the gap between poor minorities and whites. But as scandalous is that the Education Department almost certainly knew the results of this evaluation for months.”
President Obama, whose indicated a willingness to consider voucher programs if rigorous research indicates they work, can keep the program going and “hope alive” for thousands of D.C. children.