It’s good news that Indiana House Republicans mentioned early-childhood education when they unveiled their 2013 legislative priorities this week – but not such good news that they provided absolutely no details about what they plan to do about it.
In fact, when Speaker Brian Bosma was questioned about how the caucus would pay to promote more access to preschool, he apparently segued into an argument for expanding Indiana’s school voucher program, which is already one of the most generous in the country.
“He recounted a meeting with a group of low-income families who had ‘very tearfully’ explained how they had scraped together funds to pay for private school only to find that blocked them from getting a voucher,” the Indianapolis Star reported. “‘Unless they send their child back to the classroom that failed them in the first place, they have no opportunity to access what other Hoosiers are accessing through our voucher program,’ Bosma said. ‘Perhaps it’s time to take a look at that.’”
So instead of talking seriously about expanding access to high-quality early-childhood education, we’re looking at turning taxpayer funding for private and religious education into an entitlement?
OK, let’s cut the speaker some slack and assume he wants to do … something. Continue reading