Over at the Examiner, Dan Gainor takes a close look at the public education system in Baltimore.  The picture isn’t pretty:

The headlines from this very paper in recent weeks tell the story. “Battered Baltimore city teacher out of school; accused attackers allowed to return to take tests”; “Violent attacks leave emotional scars”; and “Police hope officers at schools will curb crime.”

Teachers are on the defensive. Thug students run rampant with little discipline. And then there’s the learning or lack thereof that so plagues our schools.

The solution?  Good old-fashion competition courtesy of school choice programs:

Children can learn if we give them the opportunity and safety. That means two things. First, help them opt out of our pathetic public school system. We have to provide them with the financial means – a viable voucher system. Parents of children who opt out of the schools should be able to recoup some of what they pay to underwrite the costs of private education.

Such a policy would be a boon to the poor, who can’t afford to escape the incompetence of the education establishment. Rich folks have always been able to flee. It’s middle class and poorer workers who would most benefit.

More here.