Education Savings Accounts (ESA) — Logic & Common Sense.

Whether it’s funding for gifted education or special needs, there is never enough. One has to just look into the accounting of how funds are spent to realize that much is diverted away from the true intended mission — the education of the young.

First, we must agree, that “wastage” in present school systems is the product of long established practices built up over time. Even UNESCO in the 70s has probed this problem. Corruption occurs when other than the intended get enriched, especially with government-subsidized projects. In education it is the providers — those on the producer side instead of the consumer side that get to spend the tax funded money in their image of what’s right, too often in their own best interests. Bloated administrations, teacher unions, school boards, hordes of consultants and gurus, etc., etc. are all products of the usurping and appropriating of the vulnerable education dollar. 

It’s time that much more attention be paid to directing the money to the consumer, to spend as they see fit. How can anyone deny that parents are often those most intimately equipped to best decide on the personal needs and talents of their children’s development?

The best plan so far that meets the criteria of accountability and prudent use of education dollars is the Education Savings Account plan, also called Education Debit Account or Scholarship Savings Plan or Parent Empowerment Program, etc. It is operating successfully in Arizona.

Not only is the plan showing effectiveness and satisfaction, there is also a cost saving to the government as the Accounts are paid out at 90% of the education dollar to those parents who choose the program. Special Needs students get more according to their category. Think of the savings to the government budget. What’s to dislike about this model of paying the consumer directly?

[posted in Vancouver Sun, Jan 03 '15 on gifted story  ]