The monopoly fails so many kids that more than a million parents now make big sacrifices to homeschool their kids. Two percent of school-aged kids are homeschooled now. If parents weren't taxed to pay for lousy government schools, more might teach their kids at home.
Some parents choose to homeschool for religious reasons, but homeschooling has been increasing by 10 percent a year because so many parents are just fed up with the government's schools.
Homeschooled students blow past their public-school counterparts in terms of achievement. Brian Ray, who taught in both public and private schools before becoming president of the National Home Education Research Institute, says, "In study after study, children who learn at home consistently score 15-30 percentile points above the national averages," he says. Homeschooled kids also score almost 10 percent higher than the average American high school student on the ACT.
I don't know how these homeschooling parents do it. I couldn't do it. I'd get impatient and fight with my kids too much.
But it works for lots of kids and parents. So do private schools. It's time to give parents more options.
Instead of pouring more money into the failed government monopoly, let's free parents to control their own education money. Competition is a lot smarter than bureaucrats.