Is School Choice “Welfare for the Rich?”

Source: Show-Me Institute
by James V Shuls

“As school choice policies advance nationwide, and to a lesser extent in Missouri, there appears to be a new line of argument against these policies. Historically, opponents said school choice options, such as charter schools, vouchers, or education savings accounts (ESAs) were an ‘attack on public education.’ While those arguments persist, a new and growing argument is that these policies are ‘welfare for the rich.’ This argument rests on two assumptions. First, it assumes that the beneficiaries of private school scholarship programs (ESAs and vouchers) tend to be those already in private schools. Second, this argument assumes those in private schools are ‘the rich.’ Thus, by creating programs that use direct government subsidies or are funded by tax credits, school choice programs are ‘welfare for the rich.’ This is an incredibly disingenuous argument.” [editor’s note: I doubt “the rich” want their private schools taken over by government, which is the end result of current “school choice” thinking – TLK] (03/22/24)