Unless we have the wealth to pay for private education, we are compelled by law to go to public school-and to the public school in our district. Thus the state, by requiring attendance but refusing to require equity, effectively requires inequality. Compulsory inequity, perpetuated by state law, too frequently condemns our children to unequal lives.

According to our textbook rhetoric, Americans abhor the notion of a social order in which economic privilege and political power are determined by hereditary class. Officially, we have a more enlightened goal in sight: namely, a society in which a family’s wealth has no relation to the probability of future educational attainment and the wealth and station it affords. By this standard, education offered to poor children should be at least as good as that which is provided to the children of the upper-middle class.

Children long for this-a voice, a way of being heard-but many sense that there is no one in the world to hear their words, so they are drawn to ways of malice. If they cannot sing, they scream. They are vessels of the spirit but the spirit sometimes is entombed; it can’t get out, and so they smash it!

A dream does not die on it’s own. A dream is vanquished by the choices ordinary people make about real things in their own lives.The motive may be different, and I’m sure it often is; the consequence is not.

Two years ago, George Bush felt prompted to address this issue. More spending on public education, said the president, isn’t “the best answer.

A four-year-old says, “My mommy lives in heaven. Her eyelashes go down instead of up because she is … in heaven, but I miss her.

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