Budget cuts are good for schools, argue Michael J. Petrilli, Chester E. Finn Jr., & Frederick M. Hess on National Review Online.
In concept, of course, well-delivered education eventually yields higher economic output and fewer social ills. But there’s scant evidence that an extra dollar invested in today’s schools delivers an extra dollar in value — and ample evidence that this kind of bail-out will spare school administrators from making hard-but-overdue choices about how to make their enterprise more efficient and effective.
“Depend upon it sir, when a man knows he is to be hanged in a fortnight, it concentrates his mind wonderfully,” said Samuel Johnson.
Update: To save $1.1 billion, California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger has proposed cutting five days from the school year; currently the state funds a 180-day year. I think raising class sizes — which means laying off teachers — would be better for students.