In America, the unwavering longtime acceptance—by both Democrats and Republicans—of socialist premises is laid bare in the field of education.

This excerpt from a letter to the editor, published in Barron’s in 1986, applies even more so today:

The idea of universal public education is an aberration of our capitalist system.

It is bad enough that the welfare state subsidizes the cost of housing (HUD), medicine (Medicare), and food (food stamps). But at least private enterprise still builds the buildings, cares for the sick, and produces the food. To imagine what things would be like if those industries were actually run by the government, just look at the Soviet Union. Why should the schools, of all things, be run by the government?

Over the past century, the educational leaders of the United States have adopted policies that have gradually destroyed the quality of our public schools (for example: adjustment and socialization of the child over mastery of subject matter, “look-say” in reading over phonics, and New Math over sanity). Had the schools been private, market forces would never have allowed such policies to survive. Competitors with more rational policies would have won all the customers.

The United States became the best in the world at so many things because it was the freest nation in the world. In education, unless we choose freedom, we will never be more than an also-ran.

Ronald Pisaturo
President,
American Renaissance Schools