Disagree: Government Vouchers for Religious Schools

Disagree that government vouchers should be given to pay for private religious schools?  The first amendment of the Constitution says that the U.S. government can not establish a religion of the state or prohibit the peoples free exercise of a religion.  This can be interpreted, regarding the educational system, to mean that  the government is forbidden to introduce or subsidize religious teachings in schools.  There are a multitude of reasons that government vouchers should not subsidize religious institutes.

The majority of the schools in the government school voucher program are religious; government funding of such institutes violates the 1st Amendment separation of church and state.  For example, 95% of school vouchers go to religious schools, and this directly contradicts the 1st Amendment.  If government funding of these schools is allowed through vouchers, then this sets a precedence that could extend to government funding of other religious institutions.  Additionally, private schools are not subjected to as much oversight as public school.  The government has less power to control private schools, so the quality of education may not match that of the public schools.  Also, private schools can discriminate through test scores, religion, and even disabilities when deciding who to accept; for this reason, government funding should support exclusively public schools as they must accommodate all types of individuals.  This 1st Amendment and the lack of government control over private schools are some of the reasons that school vouchers should not be allowed to fund religious schools.

Government vouchers also take funds away from public schools.  Many public schools are failing because they are unable to pay for the necessary tools of education, such as books, teachers, computers, etc.  If the funds from government vouchers were instead used to fix underfunded schools, then the U.S. educational system could be greatly improved.  Government funding should not be used to support private religious school as this disregards the 1st Amendment, instead this money should be utilized to improve the public schools of our society.

Government vouchers should not be used to fund private religious schools.  Government funding of these religious institutes clearly violates the 1st Amendment separation of church and state; these funds from school vouchers would be must better spent by improving the public schools of our society.  Furthermore, private schools are not held to the same standards as public schools, and they may discriminate regarding which student they accept into their programs.  This could result in a poorer education for students that attend private religious schools.  For these reasons, government vouchers should under no circumstances fund private schools.


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