Private schools, charter schools, and homeschools represent less than 20% of all students in K-12 education in the United States. While these are great alternatives for individuals and a limited number of students, they are not realistic alternatives for a vast majority of the population. Even school choice will not address the spread of socialism as parents will be forced to choose from schools that are filled with teachers who embrace socialism. Unless the ideas of moderates and conservatives can make their way into the public schools, which have access to over 80% of America’s future voters, our nation will continue to move further and further left until Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez becomes the Speaker of the House, or even the President of the United States, at which point there will be no turning back.
Alternatives to public education can be expensive. Americans pay a lot in property taxes and rent, leaving most families without enough money for private schooling. With the cost of living being so high, most Americans are living in households where both parents or guardians work; this also makes homeschooling impossible for many.
There is no guarantee that the teachers at these private institutions are not equally as biased as public school educators; most educators are liberal and many of them are becoming more and more politically motivated. Many of these schools follow the same state curriculum as public schools, or base the curriculum around the public one, and use the same resources promoted by national educational organizations. For example, the National Council for the Social Studies (NCSS) is a respected authority in universal social studies education. While not openly political, the NCSS is perceived to showcase the latest trends in teaching strategies, allowing teachers to stay current and adapt to evolving pedagogy. Many social studies educators are members of the NCSS, or local chapters. Unfortunately, the NCSS has recently hosted the Zinn Education Project at their annual conference, and invited Howard Zinn as their keynote speaker in 2008. They continue to embrace other radical organizations whose resources are now being used by teachers across the country thanks to the reputable endorsement of the NCSS.
The winner of the National Teacher of the Year Award in 2017, Sydney Chaffey, was recognized in a Huffington Post article that noted that she “think[s] of teaching as inherently political.” Chaffey is a charter school teacher who “thought she could make a difference as a humanities teacher incorporating issues of social justice.” In fact, democrats and liberals have now started to adopt and take over the charter school movement. Democrats For Education Reform is a New York-based non-profit that promotes the expansion of public charter schools. They list Senator Cory Booker and President Obama among their supporters. Some of their agenda is reasonable, and that has even cost them the support of the far left, but they explicitly state that they see education as a platform for social and economic justice. A quick glance at their Twitter feed shows that they promote identity politics, universal child care, and a radical immigration agenda. The president of this group was just made a member of the board of directors for the KIPP (Knowledge is Power Program) foundation. The KIPP foundation is a system of 224 public charter schools throughout the United States that had a yearly revenue over $58 million in 2012.
If the leaders of charter schools are viewing this as an opportunity to train loyal radical liberals, the options for a more conservative, or even moderate, education will become non-existent. At that point, having money to send your child to a private school won’t matter as nearly all schools will be socialist training and recruitment centers.
The only way to save this nation is to start encouraging, recruiting, supporting, and training teachers to go into public K-12 education. Moderates and conservatives must take this step to have access to the over 80% of impressionable minds over which the left currently has a monopoly of influence. This is not to say that all private schools, homeschools, and charter schools are not good, but merely that we cannot win the battle of ideas by educating only part of 20% of the next generation. Please support us at The Locke Society where our goal is to start encouraging, recruiting, supporting, and training teachers to go into public K-12 education. We can no longer just bring awareness, but must now take the necessary actions to save our nation.