Letter: Matt Chwalowski, Leesburg

Editor:  In 1982, it cost $1 / minute to call from the United States to Europe—$2.4 in today’s money.

In 2017, it is about 20 cents or free if you skype.

How come?

Did the government make it possible?  Ha-ha.  Competition doing its magic.  Back then it was one company only and they operated in their comfort zone — why innovate if they were protected from competition?

Loudoun County public schools are no different; they are very expensive because they are run under the structure of government monopoly and negative “incentives”—and produce crappy scores.

These schools should be voucherized and put parents and students in charge; it will stop the whole system from “walking dead.” Competition for students, actual recognition of teaching talents, getting rid of deadwood and stopping its demoralizing impacts would work like a miracle. Even if same results, schools would be much cheaper.

Local government would set standards but not run—governments are terrible at running anything (Washington Metro anyone?).

Having “public schools” makes as much sense as having “public church” in Loudoun County.

Why is this complicated to understand?

Matt Chwalowski, Leesburg

2 thoughts on “Letter: Matt Chwalowski, Leesburg

  • 2017-11-09 at 1:27 pm

    These are all good points. While I don’t think the price would come down considerably, I do think it would promote competition among teachers. Right now, if you are the greatest teacher in LCPS, you can earn no more than your “step” authorizes. Research shows that a top 5% teacher increases the lifetime earnings of their class by $250k for each year they teach. Such skill would be rewarded in a private system.

    Likewise, when students are assigned to an ineffective teacher against their will, parents have no options. In a competitive system, parents would simply switch to another class or school. Parents would value that same teacher would still be free to choose. But no longer would students and parents be sentenced to a year’s worth of ineffective instruction.

    This school board is one of the least competent in memory. None of them campaigned on their race to the bottom in terms of standards. Yet they have ended all midterm and final exams, pushed to eliminate SOLs (given just once per year) even annual math & English SOLs. They cut transportation funding so much we can’t even staff buses to transport kids to school. Yet the budget increases at an astronomical 8%+/yr (vs 3% student growth) because the school board wants to pay their spouses (teachers) ever-increasing raises without even distinguishing which teachers are effective.

    Competition would solve these problems.

  • 2017-11-15 at 9:39 am

    The price of phone calls did not go down because of competition – it was technology. Education vouchers are the back door to taxpayer-subsidized religion, through the use of religious private schools, clearly a violation of separation of church and state. We surely don’t need a layer of middlemen taking profits out of our taxes before spending them on education.

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