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School Choice Bill Barely Survives Senate Subcommittee

The bill did not receive a good recommendation from the subcommittee.

A bill that would use public dollars to pay for private education barely made it out of a Senate subcommittee on Wednesday.

According to The State newspaper, Sen. Wes Hayes, R-York, joined Sens. Phil Leventis of Sumter and John Matthews of Orangeburg, both Democrats, in voting down H.4894, the school choice bill, over the objections of Republican Sens. David Thomas of Greenville and Larry Grooms of Berkeley.

The bill would give parents a $4,000 tax deduction if they send their children to private schools, a $2,000 tax deduction if they home school their children and a $1,000 tax deduction if they transfer their child from one public school to another,

The bill will now go to the Senate Finance Committee. Read more on this story.

John H May 11, 2012 at 03:40 AM
To Da Wilson; “failed public school system that we don't advocate.” I don’t buy what the politicians and special interest groups are trying to sell us about the SC Public School system. It’s been repeated so many times we believe it and propagate the claim. These reports indicate otherwise; http://educationnext.org/few-states-set-worldclass-standards/ http://www.edweek.org/media/ew/qc/2011/QualityCounts2011_PressRelease.pdf The pitfalls of the reports are that the organizations that produce and publish them are funded by special interests also. These are engineered generally gloomy in outlook but the comparison is unbiased toward SC. South Carolinas overall grade is slightly above average not last. K-12 achievement scores are well below average 45th. However, it ranks near the top in level of state standards at 7th , partially explaining the lower achievement score. South Carolina ranked 1st in teacher standards. There is a lot of room for improvement in South Carolina but we are definitely not last. This bill only gives a tax break to people who can afford it and are already sending their children to private school. To Stanley; I agree that this is a distraction from more pressing issues; the dismal drop out rate, (in my opinion, this the worst failure of the system), and improving the situation in the education deserts (corridor of shame). Instead we get a tax break for the wealthy.
John H May 11, 2012 at 03:58 AM
To Stanley: I found this on charter school performance. I’ll have to study this more and vet the source. http://www.artofteachingscience.org/2012/03/15/charter-schools-what-does-the-research-tell-us/
stanley seigler May 11, 2012 at 02:31 PM
@JohnH: "...this on charter school performance..." thanks for the link. well guess charter schools not the fix...ie, study say they perform no better than regular public schools...i was surprised and quick review yielded no data bias (my opine)...but; would like to see a pro charter study...seems charters would perform better...then so much depends on the school's teachers and administrators (leadership)... aslo would like to see comparision (study) of USA, japan, europe, singapore, etc education systems...wonder how much research the School Choice Bill's originator did...
stanley seigler May 11, 2012 at 04:20 PM
@John H: "...I don't buy what the politicians and special interest groups are trying to sell us...These reports indicate otherwise; [report CLIP] "...we give Massachusetts, Missouri, and South Carolina an A for establishing rigorous expectations [world class stds]...a grade of A does not indicate students are performing at the highest level...the high grade indicates that the three states have set a high bar for students to reach...for example, only 25 percent of 8th graders in South Carolina were deemed proficient..." http://educationnext.org/few-states-set-worldclass-standards/ NOTE: those not deemed proficient in SC would be proficient in say TN. personal anecdote re SC schools: in days of yore i graduated sville hi; went to reasonably good college; i didn't have to take remedial math courses; some from prestigious yankee hi-schools (eg, baltimore poly tech) did...apologies if this a repeat, but seemed appropriate here.
John H May 12, 2012 at 02:15 AM
To Stanley: “would like to see a pro charter study.” Thank you for the synopsis. How reliable are the studies of non-public when the measuring instrument is designed for public schools? Bias has to be considered. Measuring performance will be on a level playing field once full implementation of Core Standards is in place, http://www.corestandards.org/ There are alternatives to the traditional four year High School experience it might be the collaboration between private and public. NOTE: those not deemed proficient in SC would be proficient in say TN. Each state sets its own standards against which the score is established. This is why basing an opinion of our states education system on state rank is doing the hardworking teachers and students of South Carolina an injustice.

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