Put Parents In Charge

Our national school system is broken. Nearly everyone seems to agree with that. SAT scores for reading are at a 40-year low. The testing service that administers the ACT exams says three out of four new college freshmen aren’t prepared for college. There are many inner-city schools where no students are proficient at reading, writing or math. And many parents, in all kinds of neighborhoods all across the country, are being forced to send their kids to schools they know aren’t doing a good job.

Every president since John F. Kennedy – that’s 10 presidents over a span of 50 years – have tried and failed to fix our schools. They’ve all made the same mistake: Imposing a top-down, expert-driven solution.

We’re taking the opposite approach – a bottom up, parent-driven approach. Most parents aren’t classroom experts. But they do know what’s good for their kids. By giving parents control over the money spent to educate their children, we will:

  • Turn parents into consumers in a competitive marketplace, giving them real choice when it comes to choosing the schools their children attend.
  • Force K-12 schools to compete for students. Poor-performing schools will either improve or go out of business. And with millions of families to serve, there will be huge incentives for educators to create new schools that will do a good job.
  • Force schools to treat parents and their kids as customers. Successful schools will be the ones that do the best job of serving the needs of their customers.

We believe in a bottom-up approach to fixing our schools

We want to fund parents, not schools. Under our proposal, parents could use the money for educating their children to send them to any state-approved school. The 95% floor for the amount of money that would be controlled by parents ensures that states adequately fund 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The 21st Amendment, which repealed Prohibition, can be used as a model for education reform.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.

Our goal is simple: Fix our broken school system by turning education into a competitive product, with schools forced to improve or go out of business to be replaced by schools that will deliver a quality product.

Back to our Proposed Legislation page.

Who We Are

End the Education Plantation is a temporary nonprofit organization founded by John Conlin of Littleton, Colorado, because he’s seen first-hand the harm being caused by our nation’s schools. We are a grassroots organization with one and only one goal: Give every parent in America the opportunity to send their children to schools offering a quality education.

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