The Sharon Herald posted an article Sunday about anti-voucher signs popping up around the Sharon, Sharpsville and Greenville areas in Mercer County. I’ve seen these signs in Western Pa. before, but I was surprised to learn where some of them are coming from.
Blue-and-white yard signs have popped up in the last month, signs distributed to school districts by the Pennsylvania School Board Association. And during at least two local school board meetings, superintendents displayed the signs and asked board members to take them and display them.
The signs read: “Support public education. Stop budget cuts. Say no to vouchers.”
While all the superintendents assure the Herald that taxpayer money wasn’t used to purchase the signs, it is taxpayer dollars that pay for salaries of these administrators. Administrators—like Sharon Superintendent John Sarandrea, who e-mailed school employees, “inviting them to buy a sign for $5″—using their taxpayer-funded time to decry a program that would allow thousands of Pennsylvania school children to escape violent, failing schools.
Instead of working against school choice, perhaps Sarandrea and other area administrators should be working to make their districts full of schools of choice. Unfortunately, in 2010-2011, Sharon City Schools saw 34 violent incidents (almost four a month), while 35 percent of its students are below grade level in reading.
It’s a shame that some school district administrators are using their positions, time and school’s property to sway teachers and residents against a program that would use taxpayer dollars more efficiently, improve public schools through competition and expand EITC scholarships for students throughout the state, giving students a lifeline and parents true choice.
EDITORS NOTE: The PSBA denies having created, distributed, or otherwise been involved in the design of signs, as was attributed in the Sharon Herald article.