Editorial: "The Merits of HB 84" - WSFA.com: News Weather and Sports for Montgomery, AL.

Editorial: "The Merits of HB 84"

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MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) -

Many have complained about the way HB 84, the school flexibility act, was passed in the Alabama Legislature.  It was more political that statesmanlike.

But, since the Republican super majority and governor will likely make some version of this bill into law anyway, we should consider it.

The biggest concern seems to be the cost.

The tax credits you can get for moving your child from a failing public school to one that isn't failing will cost extra tax dollars. 

There is also concern that some of that money will go to private schools.  And there is the uncertainty of the success of the tax credits for contributions to the non-profits that will subsidize scholarships for the high-poverty students.

But, if we want to try something radical, perhaps it's time to stop thinking totally in terms of how much we're spending on education and start thinking about how we want our taxes  to achieve success.

Maybe it is time to use some tax dollars to incentivize schools, public or private, to compete for students.

Results based competition through a combination of government and the marketplace may not be the silver bullet for education's woes,  but we won't know until we try it.

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