Allison Benedikt has a provocative essay on Slate arguing that sending your kids to private school makes you a "bad person."
Her argument isn't quite as outrageous as it might seem. Benedikt says that parents sending their children to private schools are "ruining-one-of-our-nation's-most-essential-institutions-in-order-to-get-what's-best-for-your-kids." The idea is that public schools are damaged when parents choose to send their kids to private schools.
I wish I could flesh out her claims more but that's about all there is.
See for yourself:
I am not an education policy wonk: I'm just judgmental. But it seems to me that if every single parent sent every single child to public school, public schools would improve. This would not happen immediately. It could take generations. Your children and grandchildren might get mediocre educations in the meantime, but it will be worth it, for the eventual common good….
So, how would this work exactly? It's simple! Everyone needs to be invested in our public schools in order for them to get better. Not just lip-service investment, or property tax investment, but real flesh-and-blood-offspring investment. Your local school stinks but you don't send your child there? Then its badness is just something you deplore in the abstract. Your local school stinks and you do send your child there? I bet you are going to do everything within your power to make it better.
There's a bit of underpants gnoming going on here.
First step: get all the children into public schools.
Third: better public schools.
The reason why Benedikt doesn't do a better job explaining how her plan would work is that it wouldn't. Benedikt's premise that creating a public school monopoly would improve education is demonstrably wrong. Monopoly education would, like every monopoly known in the history of humanity, produce a poorer quality product at greater cost. Competition improves education.