Unexpectedly Intriguing!
December 1, 2006

From Sound Politics' Stefan Sharkansky, who answers the question asked in today's Seattle Post-Intelligencer editorial:

"Whatever became of the idea that representative democracy is the essential starting point for public education, not an inconvenience to be pushed aside?"

Whatever became of the idea? It failed. Representative democracy might be the least bad way to, say, make city zoning and national security decisions, but it's a fundamentally silly way to run a service business. As a parent, I don't "trust the voters" to tell my kids' teachers how to do their jobs. Some people might enjoy delegating decisions about their children's schools to total strangers, while others might simply be satisfied with their neighborhood school. But if roughly the wealthiest 25% of Seattle's withered cohort of schoolkids are not in "trust the voters" schools, that is one clue that "trust the voters" is not the best strategy for producing educational excellence.

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