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School Vouchers Campaign

With both Labour and Conservatives pussyfooting around School Vouchers with talk of parental choice and top-up vouchers for various sub sections of schoolchildren it surely is time for a proper School Voucher campaign.
Is there one already running?
If not the blogosphere ought to start one - anyone volunteer to help? All I can do is swear at the Statist Conscription and point out it has failed, failed and failed again. And if anyone wants to borrow, or improve, these graphics please feel free to do so.

If you don't want to copy then to your own server, the preferred option, the HTML is:

<img alt="school%20vouchers%2016.gif" src="http://www.anenglishmanscastle.com/school%20vouchers%2016.gif" width="187" height="237" />
<img alt="School%20Vouchers%20Small.jpg" src="http://www.anenglishmanscastle.com/School%20Vouchers%20Small.jpg" width="100" height="87" />

(coding thanks to http://centricle.com/tools/html-entities/)

Republished from May 2007


I'm with you. In addition to the economic arguments of competition and choice, school vouchers have the strong psychological impact of engaging parent's in their child eduction.

You've got whatever support I can offer (such as it is).


ps I'm blagging the graphics to stick up on my site if that's okay.

I agree that the current system is (largely) failing, and I sympathise with the vouchers idea, but it isn't a magic bullet.

The idea depends on oversubscribed schools' ability to expand. In most cases this is a physical impossibility (there isn't enough space); in many cases there will be a shortage of available staff. And ultimately increasing the size of a school changes its character. You might be able to run a school with 1,000 pupils where the teachers and the children know each other at least by sight, but anything much larger .. ?

Frankly there are better things that we can do - less eye-catching, perhaps, but no less radical. We can change child protection laws to allow teachers to enforce a basic level of discipline. We can make setting compulsory in all academic subjects from the primary level. We can abolish local education authorities.

David Cameron recently made some semi-hopeful noises on some of these things. Any of them would involve a big fight but despite the recent hoo-hah over grammar schools it seems to me he's almost in danger of putting together an education policy worth voting for.


Why do the existing schools need to expand? They're usually too big anyway. Why not open new schools?

Quite - it is bit like saying bistro resturants can't succeed because if they did they would get too big. Let market forces cut the schools down to size - and let them be more of them.

You'll find The Difference has been calling for vouchers, though I notice nobody has suggested it as one of the policies they would most like to see David Cameron support in our current policy survey - perhaps you would care to do so!

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