In his March 16 letter “Freedom, not fear, drives Opportunity Scholarship Program” attempting to defend North Carolina’s private school voucher program, Darrell Allison implied that the private schools receiving taxpayer subsidy are held accountable for educating these voucher students because they are required to test the students and report test results and graduation rates.
What he failed to disclose is that those requirements are a sham. There are no restrictions as to the quality, scope or substance of those tests, no minimum student achievement parameters and no consistent graduation requirements, all of which combine to make it impossible to accurately measure the quality of education these schools provide.
This is by design, since the goal of the program is not to ensure that students in North Carolina secure the constitutionally required opportunity for a sound basic education, but to undermine public schools.
Additionally, schools receiving taxpayer subsidy do not have to be accredited, nor have any curriculum requirements. These schools are permitted to employ teachers that don’t have any experience, degree, training, credential or be subject to a criminal background check.
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We would never accept this lack of oversight or accountability from any other taxpayer-funded program. Why should the education of children be any different?
Managing Attorney, UNC Center for Civil Rights