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(50,923 posts)
Sun Oct 15, 2023, 11:46 AM Oct 2023

School Vouchers Are Dysfunctional by Design


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Florida homeschoolers could take Disney vacations on the taxpayer’s dime thanks to a recently expanded school-voucher program. The new Personalized Education Program, or PEP, “provides about $8,000 annually to thousands of homeschooled students to get taxpayer-funded theme-park passes, big-screen TVs, and other items with an attenuated connection to education,” Judd Legum reported at Popular Information. Theme-park tickets are an approved expense under PEP, and in a private Facebook post obtained by Legum, one parent says they got passes to Disney World and Universal Studios approved through the program. Another asks for advice on getting an annual pass approved.

As Legum notes, “Florida has delegated the administration of the vouchers to two private nonprofit organizations, Step Up for Students and AAA Scholarship Foundation. These nonprofits generate revenue based on how many students they can attract. So, they are incentivized to meet the demands of parents who receive vouchers.” Though theme-park tickets weren’t originally an approved expense, Step Up for Students reversed course after parents complained.

In the Facebook posts, parents treat the program like it’s their private candy jar. They’re right: It is. What Legum uncovered isn’t abuse, exactly. Rather, the program works as designed. Homeschooling parents now enjoy the financial resources and freedom the state of Florida denies public educators. That’s a deliberate choice on the part of Florida lawmakers and a natural outcome of the parental-rights movement.

As implemented by Step Up for Students and AAA Scholarship Foundation, PEP can cover big-screen TVs and expensive Lego sets and even some video-game consoles, if parents have a child with special needs. (In another private Facebook post, a parent asks if they can purchase a PS5 bundle that includes God of War, which is rated for adults only. They said their child is 5.) Homeschooled students can now pay for swing sets, foosball tables, air-hockey tables, skateboards, kayaks, stand-up paddleboards, dolls, and stuffed animals through PEP, Legum added.


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School Vouchers Are Dysfunctional by Design (Original Post) Nevilledog Oct 2023 OP
Same in kairos12 Oct 2023 #1
DURec leftstreet Oct 2023 #2
One more step in Republicans' efforts to kill public education. Lonestarblue Oct 2023 #3
The goal--privatize all schools so investors can harvest those public school tax dollars. Timeflyer Oct 2023 #4
Exactly. It really is as simple as that. senseandsensibility Oct 2023 #5
K&R Solly Mack Oct 2023 #6


(1,987 posts)
4. The goal--privatize all schools so investors can harvest those public school tax dollars.
Sun Oct 15, 2023, 12:32 PM
Oct 2023

Because real estate investments fluctuate, but there'll always be more school kids to indoctrinate with whatever the privatizers want. And the compliant legislators are rewarded with big donations.


(16,832 posts)
5. Exactly. It really is as simple as that.
Sun Oct 15, 2023, 02:17 PM
Oct 2023

Of course to do it they have to convince the MAGAS that it's all about parental rights.

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