School Choice and Transportation

March 3, 2020

By John McClaughry

Over the past thirty years of arguing for parental choice in education, I could always count on a left wing opponent, usually an ally of the teachers union, saying “Rich people can get their children to school, but poor people can’t afford transportation and will be left out.”

When faced with that, I would say that in my small town in the Northeast Kingdom, that has closed its last school years ago, we don’t provide bus transportation, but somehow, amazingly every school child is transported to the school of their parents’ choice.”

Left wing types can’t swallow this, because unless here is a government program to move kids around, kids are fated to live forever in rural isolation.

Now Kirby is part of the ten town Northeast Kingdom Choice District. That district has three hundred kids in school. It provides no transportation. Yet those three hundred kids attend twenty six schools in Vermont and New Hampshire, including 20 to Lyndon Institute and 28 to St. Johnsbury Academy, and somehow they all get to school.

The reason is that concerned parents in supportive communities get busy and solve problems, without setting up some overarching tax supported government bureaucracy to do it for them. My own children attended St. Johnsbury Academy for seven years, and rode with a neighbor who was a teacher there.

Moral to the story: don’t dismiss the capacity of people to solve their own problems.

John McClaughry is vice president of the Ethan Allen Institute

{ 0 comments… add one now }

Leave a Comment

Previous post:

Next post:

About Us

The Ethan Allen Institute is Vermont’s free-market public policy research and education organization. Founded in 1993, we are one of fifty-plus similar but independent state-level, public policy organizations around the country which exchange ideas and information through the State Policy Network.
Read more...

Latest News

VT Left Wing Media Bias Unmasks Itself

July 24, 2020 By Rob Roper Dave Gram was a long time reporter for the Associated Press, is currently the host of what’s billed on WDEV as a...

Using Guns for Self Defense – 3 Recent Examples

July 24, 2020 By John McClaughry  The Heritage Foundation’s Daily Signal last week published eleven news stories about citizens using a firearm to stop a crime. Here are...

FERC ruling on solar subsidies could help Vermont ratepayers

July 21, 2020 By John McClaughry Last Thursday, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission finalized its updates to the Public Utility Regulatory Policies Act (PURPA), in what the majority...

The Moderate Left’s Stand for Free Speech

July 17, 2020 By David Flemming Harper’s Magazine, a long-running monthly magazine of literature, politics, culture, finance, and the arts, is hardly what you would call a ‘politically...

Trump’s Regulatory Bill of Rights

July 16, 2020 by John McClaughry “President Trump [last May] issued an executive order entitled  ‘Regulatory Relief to Support Economic Recovery.’ The executive order includes a regulatory bill...

Video