End The Education Plantation wants Congress to pass and the President to sign a federal law that does two things:
- Requires states to fund parents, not school districts. We want to use the power of the federal purse to accomplish this. Our message to states and school districts is that if you want federal education dollars you must give parents control over the money used to educate their children. The money follows the child. We don’t want to dictate how the states implement this. Just that they have to do it.
- Sets a floor of at least 95% of the average total per-pupil spending by district or state that would be controlled by parents. Parents could use this money to send their children to any state-approved school they choose. The 95% floor ensures that states adequately fund the parents so any parent — regardless of where they live, how much money they have or the color or their skin — can afford to send their kids to a school offering them a quality education. We want this average to include EVERYTHING. This is the floor, not the ceiling. States could increase the percentage controlled by parents, but not fall below it. There will have to be some type of state regulatory structure. That’s what the remaining portion will fund.
The 21st Amendment, which repealed Prohibition, can be used as a model for education reform. It doesn’t tell the states what to do. It simply states that alcohol regulation is a state matter. Our bill should do the same thing for education.
Goals of the legislative language:
- Turn education into a competitive product, with schools forced to improve as they compete for students – just as colleges compete for students.
- Short and simple are better. Ideally we’d like to be able to put the heart of the text on a billboard or side of a bus.
Our initial attempt:
Any state that accepts any federal educational funds must provide parent-directed funding for their children’s pre-K and K-12 education equal to at least 95% of the total per pupil formula funding of that specific district or state. These averages will be adjusted for special needs children as determined by the state legislature, being some multiple(s) of the adjusted total per-pupil formula funding. This parent-directed funding may be used at any state-approved school or course provider to purchase any and all learning services and other school-related needs. Unused funds may be retained for future educational services, including post-secondary tuition and fees. States will have two (2) years to implement these changes prior to being held to the provisions of the law. Failure to comply will result in the immediate termination of all federal educational funds until the state is compliant with all provisions of this law.
Willing to give it a try?
Then draft a bill that meets the two goals outlined above and go here to submit your proposal. We hope a lot of you will participate. One of the tenets of this organization is that the many will always outperform the few. That’s a statistical fact.
We look forward to seeing what you come up with. We’re a grassroots organization. So, we can’t afford any prize money. But we’ll give you public credit for your work if we use your version. And you’ll get the satisfaction of turning your words into law.
We also will need a formula for calculating average per pupil funding. If you want to give that a shot go here to submit your proposal.
In addition, we need a comprehensive list of the federal education dollars we are speaking of. If you want to give that a shot go here to submit your proposal.
Thank you for your help.