This post was originally a comment in response to this post on AngryBlog, but I liked it so much I'm posting it here:
Potential reasons for opposition to school-choice:
1.) Public funding of religious schools
2.) An erosion of the sense of “community” that comes with geography-based schools
3.) Fear of treating children like commodities to be shuffled around to school after school to prove a political point
Point #1 is a valid concern, but as long as there’s nothing in the allocation formula regarding religion (or the lack thereof) I think that this concern goes away.
Point #2 is not a valid concern because it relies on the false assumption that geography-based schools have the potential to foster a greater sense of community than performance-based schools.
Point #3 is valid, but as Tim points out, it can’t get any worse than it already is. We’ve been carrying out the progressive experiment with education for a long time now, and inner-city kids are the victims of “progressive dogmatism.”
The progressive system isn’t working (and in fact isn’t all that progressive). It’s time to try something else.