Friday, January 05, 2007

Market Based Education

Like healthcare, Canadians have a natural aversion to private education. The success after all, of a private institution is always dependent in some degree on its scarcity and in turn a messiness of competition. This does not compare favorably with our idealism of what a childhood should be.

Private education conjures an image of privilege to many Canadians who rightly believe in an egalitarian society - not a chummy boy's club. It is a fallacy though to think that this scarcity must be defined by price. Vouchers is the idea that schools should be funded (in part as a supplement, or as a whole) by the government based on where students go - and that students and teachers should be given the ability to choose where they go (versus being defined within set geographic boundaries).

Vouchers had been championed by the recently deceased Milton Friedman and you can read an editorial by him here. Also a recent post on market driven education in India here from Cato.

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