Friday, June 11, 2010

Government shouldn't be in the driver's seat

"Driver's education has changed from a state-funded program in public schools to a largely privatized system that can cost parents hundreds," The Oklahoman reported June 4. 

Duane Brown, 45, was a driver's education instructor for Edmond Public Schools in 1993 when his program was dropped from the school. "It started getting taken out of schools, and to be honest, I didn't think that the private sector could do it," Brown said. In 1996, he opened Brown's Driving School, and proved himself wrong. "We put kids one-on-one in the car with an instructor,” Brown said. "In the past that never happened. This business just took off." 

What a concept. Parents taking responsibility for their own children, and participating in a free-enterprise system that matches buyers and sellers. Something I urged way back in 1998 when a reporter for The Oklahoman interviewed me for a story about a push to increase driver's ed in the schools.

"If the Yellow Pages are any indication, the market seems to be taking care of driving instruction quite nicely," Dutcher said. "Schools need to devote their time and money to imparting core knowledge. Before rushing to spend more taxpayer money, legislators should do some checking -- will public school driving instructors outperform professionals in the private sector who do it full-time? Does public school driver's ed measure up to private driving instruction?"

It's good to know driver's ed is largely privatized (though I would have settled for voucherized). Now on to math, science, history ...

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