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School choice would help weed out predators

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Ben Wolfgang's article "Student-teacher sex: Where does it end?" (Page 1, Tuesday) not only sheds light on the disgusting crimes of some American teachers, but also reveals a tragic failure of the public school system: a complete lack of parental involvement in public-school teacher hirings and firings, which could root out some of these predators, and having a choice in which school a child attends.

As it stands, the acquittal rates of teachers accused of sexual misconduct with students is quite high, largely due to false accusations by students. However, under the government monopoly on school choice, parents and students currently have no affordable alternatives to turn to when an inappropriate relationship develops.

Just imagine a student who is forced to remain enrolled in a school with a teacher who has abused him or her in the past. With many teachers protected by tenure and union bureaucrats, this nightmare could be a reality. We cannot risk the welfare of another child as we wait for the data that prove this phenomenon.

Parents have their children's best interests at heart and should be afforded the means to exercise this care in choosing schools for their kids. A school-choice program gives poor families the economic freedom to decide between public, private and parochial options, whether they seek improved performance, different instruction, more efficient administration, parental influence or better care for their children.


Lexington, Mass.

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