Friday, April 1, 2016

Does school choice threaten the independence of religious schools?

People of faith are sometimes skeptical of school choice programs because they fear those programs could come with strings attached.

"The evangelical tradition of skepticism toward involvement with the state is generally a healthy one," Greg Forster writes in this month's issue of Perspective, "but these particular fears are unfounded. Parents, not government, have the power in school choice programs. Schools are not getting entangled with the state, but with parents."

Indeed, Forster explains, "school choice actually creates a strong public constituency for protecting the autonomy of private schools! And the larger the school choice program is, the stronger that constituency is. Counter-intuitive as it may seem, school choice may actually be the most promising strategy we have for fighting off the threat of government control of religious institutions—a threat that is currently growing for reasons that have nothing to do with school choice."

I encourage you to read his entire article, "Churches for Choice," here.

UPDATE: Dr. Forster's conversation with OCPA's Trent England is available here.

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