Tuesday, October 16, 2007

vouchers supporters are ignoring rural Utah

The graphic of the day (graphics love to The Salt Lake Tribune, H/T Accountability First):
To me, this looks like a map of the Wasatch Front, not the state of Utah. Since state taxpayer dollars are going to this ideological pet project, shouldn't everyone in the state be able to use the vouchers? And if it is such a great and wondrous thing that will magically fix our public schools and lower costs (since the invisible hand of the market gave us Enron, WorldCom, Tyco,...), why can't the kids in Kanab or Hurricane enjoy their vouchers?

Its the same reason $24 Million of your tax dollars are going to a useless soccer stadium in Sandy, Speaker Curtis' home town: because Republicans in the legislature can and don't care about actual public policy outcomes. They just want pork for their district or a nice pork tenderloin paid for by a lobbyist.


David said...

I'd like to see a comparison of population in Utah (by location) with location of private schools. The vast majority of private schools (about 3/4 based on looking at this map) are along the Wasatch front, but so is nearly 2/3 of the population of Utah.

If you say that 75% of private schools are located near 67% of the population this is not such a horrible imbalance as your title suggests.

And you might notice on your map that both Kanab and Hurricane have private schools (where they could presumably "enjoy their vouchers").

Oldenburg said...

I am sorry I didn't read the map more carefully and included Kanab when I should have included Moab, which has nothing near by.

It may be that the majority of the population is near a private school, but that doesn't mean that private school will accept the voucher. Nor does it mean that we should ignore those who live in areas with no nearby private school, let alone voucher-accepting private schools.

As someone who has traveled around this state and visited many small Utah towns-- like Grantsville Manti, Juab, Vernal etc.-- I know how far away they are from private schools and the lack of "school choice" is really a function of geography and economics, not the teachers union.