“Let Me Rise” is a short film from the Heritage Foundation about the ability (or rather, inability) of Americans to send their children to good schools of their own choice.
Every taxpaying American is charged for the public school system, yet many Americans find that the public school system isn’t meeting their needs. These Americans are forced to pay for something with which they are dissatisfied, and this forced-payment leaves them with fewer resources to put their child in a private, religious or home school environment as they would like to.
While many public schools throughout our country provide a high quality education, many are gravely failing our children. Consider that for years, Washington D.C. schools–the school system of our nation’s capital–has spent more than any other school district per child…while D.C. school children finish dead-last in academic performance.
Many parents are appalled at the institutional hostility to their Christian faith that characterizes most public schools. While there are a number of good teachers in the public school system, many–either through ignorance or outright bias–are hostile toward personal displays of religious faith by public school students. Further, the attempts by our errant court system to declare public schools as “faith-free zones” sends a clear message to our children: your religious beliefs have no place in “real life.”
Still other parents are dismayed at the moral cesspool the public school system has become, with regard to their children’s classmates. Many of their classmates come from broken homes and homes where children receive no moral training or discipline whatsoever. What’s more, the court system and school administration has made it extremely difficult for teachers to maintain discipline, order, and a morally wholesome environment. Consequently, despite the best efforts of some parents, their children learn from other children about drugs, alcohol abuse, sexual promiscuity, homosexual behavior, rebelliousness, violence, and more–all in an institutional environment that teaches them “religious values are not welcome here in the ‘real world’.”
While I believe all parents and children across our country deserve the assistance of their government in providing the best education parents deem possible for their children, it makes the most sense to begin extending such choice in the areas of our country where school conditions are worst.
So it is that this film concentrates on just that place: Washington D.C. schools. The D.C. Opportunity Scholarship Program (DCOSP) is a program to help disadvantaged students attend private schools. However, Congress in its infinite wisdom has decided to phase out this program, to once again lock 1,715 students into the worst school district in the nation–while many of them exercise the right to put their own children in private schools. Even our president puts his children in private school–something many average Americans cannot afford after sending their taxes in to support the public school system.
Why not return to parents a portion of their tax dollars so they can get a better education for their children? Private schools and home schoolers have been proving for years that they can produce better academic achievement for far less money per pupil.
While Juan Williams of NPR is a liberal, even he recognizes the need for the D.C. Opportunity Scholarship Program, and he addresses that need in the “Let me Rise” video below.
We must stop aiming for the lowest common denominator. We must stop perpetuating ignorance and helplessness. We must stop putting unions and special interests before the good of our children–and our republic.
Religion, morality and knowledge, being necessary to good government and the happiness of mankind, schools and the means of education shall forever be encouraged. – Northwest Ordinance, 1787
Religion is the only solid base of morals and that morals are the only possible support of free governments. Therefore education should teach the precepts of religion and the duties of man toward God. – Gouverneur Morris, signer of the Constitution and author of the preamble