Parents in many other countries have more freedom of choice in education than Americans do. In Chile, Sweden, and the Netherlands, they can choose private schools without financial penalty. As we expand school choice in the United States, reformers and policymakers should look beyond our borders and learn from the examples of other countries. Critics in America claim that school choice would benefit a minority of students at the expense of the majority or that choice in education would drain funding from public schools and segregate students into racial or economic groups.Are these claims based on fact or fear?
In this collection, scholars from Europe, South America, New Zealand, Australia, Canada, and the United States examine other countries’ experiences with school choice and draw out critical lessons for America. What school choice policies are most effective? How well do private schools serve the poor? What policies are necessary to promote the widest selection of educational opportunities for the largest number of children? Also, what controls and regulations are most harmful to the development of a competitive education industry? Has school choice in other countries led to a free education market, or has it, at least in some cases, led instead to increased regulations, regimentation, and uniformity among private and public schools?
The wealth of information and insights contained in this volume will aid policymakers and reformers as they search for the best ways to improve American education.