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Education should be privatized.

1 point
7 points
Bugsy460Bugsy460 (PRO)
Thank you for joining me in this debate, JackSprat. Let us get right into this debate.

1. First, we have to decipher the difference between privatization and deregulation. Privatization is, as defined by Merriam Webster, "to change from public to private control or ownership" while deregulation is "the act or process of removing restrictions and regulations". The reason this difference matters so much is because government regulation is necessary for the privatization of education to succeed. Accreditation and safety regulations are important to ensure that schools work properly, but they don't have to be owned by the government.

2. Private education offers a higher level education. Children who go to private schools do better on standardized tests and do better on grades. For example, 63% of private school students in Britain got an A or grade seven or above, compared to 23% of public school students.1 This educational gap isn't only relevant to Europe, however, with the United States reflecting similar statistics with regards to SAT scores. 2 Now the issue is all of this is relevant to testing core curriculum and passing a test, but what about arts and humanities? This once again goes to private schools. While we can't test if these schools are making kids more creative, we can see the availability of classes and extracurricular activities that foster creativity, and private schools offer more on average. 3 The even bigger point about extracurricular activities however is that they don't get cut when the budget get's tight, which happens in many public schools. This is doubly important when we see the benefits of extracurricular activities in regards to the base education of students. 4 To be simply put, education from a private school is simply better then what public schools have to offer.

3. Private education, contrary to popular belief, is cheaper in two regards, division of costs and price of education.
A. Education is currently paid for through taxation, which enforces that everyone must pay into the system, but this division of cost is unfair no matter how you view the taxation of education. If you believe the purpose of education taxation is a payback for yourself, then the taxes are unfair to people who were privately educated, if this be a private school or home school. Between the two sources, this comes to 7% of the American population that would be unfairly taxed. 5,6 Now, if you believe the purpose of taxation is to cover any children you put through public education, this once again unfairly burdens those who privately educate their children, not to mention the 37% of Americans who don't plan on having kids. 7 The current system of helping pay for education unfairly burdens some people with these costs when they simply don't have any need for them.
B. Now that we've established that it's unfair to force some people to pay for services they never use, the worry might then be that it'll cost to much for some individuals, but this is simply untrue. Private education is roughly 700 dollars cheaper a year than public education. 8,9 The myth about it being more expensive continues to exist because private education is paid on top of public education taxes for individuals. This still could seem like a financial burden, but there are free online options available. 10 Now to preempt the argument of internet availability, public schools are requiring internet access,11 so unless we can prove internet activity is unnecessary for public education, then this is still an adequate solution. 

4. Education in many developed nations is secular. Parents may wish to provide their children a faith based education, but in secular nations that support all religions, they can't provide this through public schooling. Allowance of faith-based education is necessary to protect the spiritual rights of citizens, but this is simply not an option for people who are crushed under the weight of educational taxes and then can't afford a private school on top of that. Public education is set up to systematically, if unintentionally, cut spirituality out of education. While this might be better than the alternative of forcing certain religions on those who have different values, the systematic destruction of faith-based education must be rectified by private education. Private education will allow faith-based education to strive without it crushing other religions. Unfortunately, claims have been made that this doesn't allow for students to experience a wide variety of cultures, but this is a vaguely disguised claim of wanting to assimilate all cultures. Public education puts all children in a nation through a singular way of thinking and belief. By putting all students through this system of thinking, we indoctrinate them into viewing the world through this secular vision, rather than valuing their cultural belief systems.12 This is a definite example of colonization. Education was used in colonized nations after the break-up of the Ottoman Empire to force traditional cultures in the Middle East to accept Western ideas of state acceptance. 13 Private education, which allows for choice in education, ensures these cultures don't get assimilated and colonized by Western secularism. 

In conclusion, education should be privatized for the educational quality, costs, and cultural benefit. Vote aff.

Return To Top | Posted:
2020-05-05 14:09:06
| Speak Round
JackSpratJackSprat (CON)
Thank you for the opportunity to chat about this subject.

I accept that Privatization does not mean Deregulation.  

Universal Privatization of Education is Fundamentally Flawed.

1.  Education is a fundamental right that is at risk with privatization.
2.  The government investing in an educated population leads to a stronger economy.
3.  Privatization does not mean better results as we see in the US Charter School System


The International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights is an international treaty ratified by 164 countries around the world. It states, inter alias 

    •  a right to free, compulsory primary education for all, 
    • an obligation to develop secondary education accessible and ideally free to all, 
    • an obligation to develop equitable access to higher education

In the US  SCOTUS  1954 case of   Brown v Board of Education, as part of the unanimous judgment, it is stated by Justice Warren. 

“Education is perhaps the most important function of state and local governments. . .
In these days, it is doubtful that any child may reasonably be expected to succeed in life if he
is denied the opportunity of an education. Such an opportunity, where the state has
undertaken to provide it, is a right which must be made available to all on equal terms.”

We can see the argument that education is a right.  It is also clear that the international community has strongly shown that free access to education is essential.  Privatizing education leaves significant access problems, and threatens access to education.

It would be safe to say that if an individual is below a tax bracket, they certainly do not have the extra income to pay for schools.  Therein we have a prima facia access problem.  Those children of parents who cannot afford education would not have access to it.

Their right education is violated.


Economists around the world agree that an educated citizen base is one of the clear paths to economic vitality.   Consider Japan: It possesses few natural resources, consists of a handful of densely-populated islands that are remote from Europe and the United States, and came out of the Second World War with its industrial base all but destroyed. Even so, the Japanese people committed themselves to build a first-class education system, government-funded. 

The world bank says the US GPD has potential to increase by $32 trillion, or 14.6 percent if all students are brought up to basic mastery by the National Assessment of Educational Progress standards.  Furthermore, improvements in education according to spending on K-12 schooling is said to reap more improvements from investment than the burden of the cost.

There are countries around the world rich in resources, but poor in the economy because they do not have a strong educated citizen base.  

Only 4 countries around the world spend more than 10% of their GDP on education, with the US ranked 85th at just 5%.   

Taking away that investment reduces the economic strength of the country.  


A hybrid privatization approach in the US is the charter school system.  Effectively schools are privately run, and stipends are given based on enrolled students.    The charter school system has had some significant issues.

According to the Washington Post

    1. Average traditional school performance was 77% (SPP, school performance profile), where Charter Schools scored 47-66%
    2. Because schools are profit-driven, outcomes of students are not a priority, as seen in Milwaukee
    3. All for Profit, Pennsylvania is seen by hedge fund managers as a prime ground for “investment opportunities” in charter schools,
    4. Countless cases of fraud
    5. No accountability or oversight
    6. Schools skim and weed out students that may not perform to their standards, isolating them.

And the list goes on.  the point is that even in a hybrid model of privatization, there are substantial problems,  Profit being a significant factor.  And while the Charter Schools themselves maybe not for profit, the management companies they hire to run the school are for-profit

Private does not equal better.


1.  I have demonstrated how private run education is not necessarily better. In addition, there is no evidence provided by my opponent that privately run schools offer better art and humanities.  On the contrary,  We see in this report, where low-income children in privately run schools were provided very little in terms of anything beyond reading and math. 

2.  My opponent claims it is not fair for people who do not use a service to pay for the service.  As I outlined above this is not a consumption-based expense.  It is an investment.  If I do not drive, I do not ask for a refund from the city apportioned to road upkeep.  I still benefit from the good roads.  The second problem is the economy of scale.  Reducing the contribution by 37%(the non-users) then drives up the cost of the users, which then adds more accessibility problems.  My opponent fails to mention the cost of private education is highly variables across states.  Some states it is over $20k/year per child.  That is based on their own source.

3.  Private education is still available.  My opponent's arguments about choice are not at issue.  Nothing suggests the Private schools should not be an option, and public schools should be mandatory.  


Forcing all schools to be private infringed on the fundamental rights of students,  reduces economic prosperity,  and does not yield better results.

Return To Top | Posted:
2020-05-05 15:44:31
| Speak Round
Bugsy460Bugsy460 (PRO)
I will start with defending my three points and then I will attack my opponents.
My Case

1. My opponent has made the mistake of confusing charter schools and private schools in all his research. All of my evidence is specific to private schools, while his, including the one critiquing my argument of extracurricular activities, is specific to charter schools. Unless their is evidence of private schools being unable to outperform public schools, then my point still stands. To help clarify, charter schools are considered public schools.1

2. The price is different among states, just like minimum wage. 2 Things fluctuate when the available money in a state is different. It changes the value of the currency since it is only backed by confidence within the states. He also tries to use roads as an analogy for taxation, but this falls through as well. Not driving doesn't mean you don't use roads, it just means you don't drive. You may still use ride sharing services. Even if he were to speculate on the existence of someone who doesn't, we then have an important question, should we fund anything that would benefit society? Is there enough funds to fund every beneficial society project? Very simply, no. We have to allocate resources where they would be most beneficial, and a failing education system is not beneficial. He also ignored the existence of free internet classes, which ensure that lower income households would still get there family an education.

3. He disregards an entire assimilation-based cultural genocide with the argument "it's still available." This is not a sufficient answer. As long as there is a government sponsored option that is the root of the evil, we have a duty to eliminate it. A lot of families would never consider faith-based education because it's not a popular option, with a small private education population.

Opponents Case

1. I 100% agree education is a right, but we need to clarify that it's a quality education, not the public system. I showed that there are free internet educations. This completely negates any claim that it threatens the right to education. The market will fill any niche, and non-profit or advertisement funded, online educations will exist, ensuring that the right to education isn't threatened. On top of this, scholarships and financial aid from educational institutions and charities will exist. They exist in the status quo 3, and as privatization increases, the amount available will increase.

2. He brings up how education is an investment in the economy, and I once again agree, but this isn't a refutation against private education. I showed free online education opportunities and my opponent never refuted that. This means we will still gain the economic benefit of private education. Since private education is higher quality, private education would lead to an even higher economic boost. 

3. We already set the difference between charter and private schools. His sources are all about charter schools. My private school-based education shows how the education system would look, and should be trusted over his charter school-based evidence.

In conclusion, my case still stands because I show that private schools are higher quality, cheaper, and better for religious culture in America. Also, I prove his claims about failing private schools, the threat of getting rid of the educational right, and economic damage don't apply.

Return To Top | Posted:
2020-05-06 12:53:25
| Speak Round
JackSpratJackSprat (CON)
I would like to sincerely thank Bugsy460 for his response, use of comments to get clarification, and good demeanor in the debate.  Its good to get intelligent timely responses.

Notwithstanding the aforementioned, my opponent has a few fundamental flaws in their argument.   My argument has three key components, all of which are substantive enough individually to highlight the flaws with forced privatization of education.

My Arguments are:

1. Education is a fundamental right that is at risk with privatization.
2. The government investing in an educated population leads to a stronger economy.
3. Privatization does not mean better results as we see in the US Charter School System

I will reiterate that I am not arguing for forcing children into publically funded schools.  Nor am I eliminating choice.  I am saying that the government has to be the primary supplier and allow the market to fill in where it develops.  My opponent argues that the government has no fiscal role in education.

I am taking a different approach to this retort.  The title of the debate is that "Education should be Privatized."
In clarification, we both agreed that there is a difference between privatization and regulation.  My opponent states (and I agreed)

"Accreditation and safety regulations are important to ensure that schools work properly, but they don't have to be owned by the government."

So we agree that the government will have to have a role in education.   Let's keep this in mind as I will refer to it later.


While my opponent agrees that education is a fundamental right, he is allowing the private sector to supply that right.  He is hoping there will be an effective provision of online education that will be free and meet the accreditation standards that he agreed needed to be put in by regulation.  And whilst he quotes there is free online education, he has not demonstrated
a) A free online course that is accreditated
b) That same course has no government contribution or subsidy.

In fact, in Pennsylvania, it is estimated home schooled learning students cost between $5k and $8k per year per student.  There are many costs that go into eLearning, including teacher to student feedback, curriculum preparation,  and effective learning management system infrastructure.   I will accept that the private market may be able to deliver someone similar service for cheaper.  The point here is not which is higher, it is that there are substantial costs associated with a properly accredited online education curriculum. Who covers those costs?

However there is another substantial element of effective childhood pedagogy, and that is the social aspect,  Children need to learn from other children.   If they are forced to learn from home, they are now at home... no social interaction.  I addition you now have a caregiver problem.  A parent or guardian will be required to supervise the child.  We know the pains of this first hand during this COVID lockdown, having to teach our kids at home while schools are closed.  This has both an impact on the fundamental concept of education, as well as economic implications.

Children with special needs also have this fundamental right.  Closing down the government


My opponent argues that Charter schools are not private schools.  He is incorrect, in so far as charter schools are accredited, and regulated, and not owned by the government.   The only difference between a Charter school and a "Private School" is the source of the money.  In. Charter school, the money is paid on a per-student basis by government funds.  In a Private School, the money comes from an individual's pocket.

With significant pressure on government expenditures,  there is significant pressure for schools to provide the minimum level of services for the lowest amount.  A clear market condition.  It is very plausible that if all education is privatized,  the quality will not exceed what we already see in the charter school system.   My opponent states that extracurricular activities are not cut in private schools. when budgets get tight.  This is absurd. The basic economics are the same,  We see in my Charter school example that budget pressure forces schools to focus only on reading and math. The fundamental economic drivers are the exact same across private, and public regimes.

I also demonstrated that we see in Charter schools filtering, or cherry-picking of students to meet their objectives.  This would create a significant multi-tier level of education that would have a clear and foreseeable impact on disadvantage or special needs children.

My opponent trying to distance themselves from the problems with Charter schools is erroneous,  In fact, Charter schools are a prophetic crystal ball on how schools would run in a totally private market.


My opponent stated that the variability in the cost of a full private school can be correlated.  This is incorrect.  Per my opponent's reference, let's look at the cost of a private school in Georgia rounded down is $10k.    Georgia has no minimum wage.    Tennesse is the same, with a private school cost of just $9k, and no minimum wage.  You will remember that both those amounts are higher than the average national cost of private school. My opponent's arguments on the cost being equalized based on minimum wage are clearly incorrect.

As I mentioned above, there is an additional benefit and value to education, and that being a place for children to go.  If a child is at home for o line education that reduces the earning potential of the household by either limiting the number of parents who can work or by increasing overhead by having to hire someone to supervise.  This may not always be the case if one of the parents is able to do an online job.  However, that is the exception not the norm.

Additionally, the public school system provides the National School Lunch Program, which subsidized lunches to various degrees to those students who have financial needs.  Over 30 million students partake in the program.  Taking away this program posts an additional cost to the families that clearly have financial needs.  

With my opponent's approach, individual families will be forced to great individual costs, which I demonstrated could not be beared


My opponent agrees with the need for investment in education.  However, my opponent's understanding of investment appears flawed.

the action or process of investing money for profit or material result. 

Leaving education to the private sector is not an investment.  My opponent claims because there are online schools for free, that will suffice.   Why do we not see this as a driving economic factor in emerging countries.  Sure online education can provide improved access, however, it is not free, and is not aa substitute for a proper education system.


My opponent agreed that education is a fundamental right, that you should invest in education and that schools needed to be accredited.  Yet he then states 'government-sponsored options need to be eliminated'.    You cannot accredit something you do not sponsor.  or invest in it.  You need to spend money on the accreditation process and criteria.  You need to spend money on enforcement options.
In Meyer v. Nebraska and Farrington v. Tokushige, U.S. Supreme Court cases of the 1920s, the fundamental right of parents to direct the education of their children was established. These decisions are still heavily cited today by those claiming the right to home school in federal and state courts.
There is nothing that prevents people of faith from creating private schools, or from having parents teach their children at home.

In addition, there is nothing preventing supplemental education.   Education is not limited to the sarcastically defined hours of attendance.   Children are often entered into supplemental programs, alternative languages, STEM, sports, music, Sunday school, youth groups, etc.  


In short, my opponent has agreed with all of my foundational statements., and through those admissions my opponent contradicts himself

My opponent's options are fiscally detrimental to a significant percentage of the population.  My opponent's objectives of additional faith-based education are solvable now by parents investing time and energy into either homeschooling or after school/weekend programs.

The fundamental right of education and the benefits of investing therein cannot be solved by a private system. 

The resolution fails.

Return To Top | Posted:
2020-05-06 18:53:09
| Speak Round
Bugsy460Bugsy460 (PRO)
Thank you, JackSprat, for participating in this debate quickly and intelligently. I'll be using the same headers as JackSprat since they cover the basis of the argumentation.

Before I begin, I need to make clarification on a definition. Before the round, we agreed on the definition of "education is a primary school, high school, etc. that normally is a public school." This is an important note that we will apply later in the round.

Fundamental Right

He asks for an online system that is accredited, but that isn't available. Since we have a public system of education, accreditation regulations aren't set up yet. That would have to come after privatization. My original evidence for the existence of free online education was a list of 25 different websites that help with education. Unless my opponent can prove they are all government funded in some way, shape, or from, there is free private options, guaranteeing the right to education. Even if there was cost issues, this can be covered by my point about scholarships and financial aid. As the amount of paid private education goes up, so will the amount of scholarships and financial aid offered by schools, charities, and philanthropists doing it out of the good of their heart or for tax breaks. Another way funds can be given to people who need it is through already established welfare channels. Over 1/5 of Americans are on welfare programs 1, and these can be expanded if necessary. Either way, we achieve a possibility of free education for those who need it. 

My opponent then brings up social education, saying kids need to learn from each other. There is no reason kids in online schooling, or home schooling of any kind, should lack social skills. According to recent research done at Stetson University, home schooled children are actually better at social skills then their public school counterparts 2.

Lastly for this point, my opponent begins to bring up special needs kids, but doesn't finish his point. I'll still answer it for security of argument. Firstly, there is private schools made for special needs children 3. These are schools that are specially trained to handle special needs children and would handle their education better than any public school can. For costs, scholarships, financial aid, welfare programs, and disability payments could all ensure that the child has access to education. An issue that could be brought up is the lack of regulation in regards to private schools handling of special needs children, but this would be addressed in the future. With a public option, there isn't a rush to ensure private schools can pull their weight, but this would change upon educational privatization.

Private Sector

This entire argument from both sides comes down to one question, is public or private education of higher quality. Both sides have given you multiple evidence sources which say different things, so we then have to compare the quality of evidence. My evidence outlines how private schools ensure higher academic scores, more creative options, and a larger extracurricular base less likely to be cut. While I can't claim extracurricular activities will never be cut in a private school, the integral part they play to their curriculum ensures that the decision is made with a lot more care and pressure. All his evidence refuting this is about charter schools. He's trying to play around with the definition of charter schools since it is a hybridization, and I'll agree charter schools are bad for education, but this is because of the government aspect. If it was the private aspect, then my opponent would be able to find evidence that private schools are to blame, not just charter schools. Without the evidence indicting private schools, my evidence holds up as superior for the round.


His arguments about average private school costs is negated by free online options.

For parents who can't afford someone to watch their kid, there is scholarship, financial aid, and welfare options to ensure that their kid could go to school somewhere. If the family is that close to struggling, they could get financial aid and welfare programs that are rightly needed for them. Unless these programs can be proved to not work, then they cover not only the cost of parents staying at home, but also for lunches. The government already has avenues of helping lower income families in welfare programs. If necessary, funds from education resources could go into these programs, ensuring those who need it receive financial resources. This is where the definition clarification I made earlier comes into play. We had previously agreed that education is K-12 schooling that was already private. What this doesn't include is welfare programs, so welfare programs could still go to funding students ability to achieve an education, without me advocating against my position.

Economic Investment

The point he's making is that education is an investment made by the government into the economic prosperity of their nation. The problem with this is he makes it seem that only the state's ownership can ensure this economic growth. I've proven that everybody will have access to education in a privatized environment, so this economic investment is unnecessary in the ownership and operation of educational facilities. If my opponent wants to ensure that economic investment is being made, we can reallocate some of the educational funds back to into welfare programs, ensuring that economic investment is still happening, but not at the expense of educational quality.

Cultural Genocide

He says there are options for extracurricular religious opportunities, but this doesn't address the issue of secular education attacking beliefs. For example, secular views usually lead to evolution based education, while this can be in direct conflict with religious values. These contradictions have harmful effects on adolescents. A study in Turkey showed that students at secular schools have higher suicidal ideation rates than religious schools. 4 This conflict can't be solved simply through extracurricular. Parents should be able to have widespread, competitive options for education to ensure they can culturally protect their faith and successfully pass it down to their children without Western secularism corrupting it through the public education system.

My opponent makes a claim about funds going to regulatory and accreditation agencies, but this doesn't affect the conversation. We agreed that there is a difference between privatization and deregulation, 


Private schools are of higher quality than public schools, with the only evidence against it being in relation to specific public school specifications. Private schools are cheaper on average with multiple avenues to ensure cheap or free education for those who need it, guaranteeing the right to education. We can ensure the government is correctly investing money in our economy by not having them fund a broken public education system. Lastly, we can preserve cultural faith by enforcing private education. 

Return To Top | Posted:
2020-05-07 03:12:21
| Speak Round
JackSpratJackSprat (CON)

My Arguments are:

1. Education is a fundamental right that is at risk with privatization.
2. The government investing in an educated population leads to a stronger economy.
3. Privatization does not mean better results as we see in the US Charter School System

The core element about this debate is privatizing education and making the users pay for it.   Specifically, as my opponent had said in Round 2, 

 "As long as there is a government sponsored option that is the root of the evil, we have a duty to eliminate it."

This is an important quote I will reference below.


Addressing my opponent's comments, the first is related to online schools.   My opponent inadvertently misunderstood what I asked.   I asked my opponent to demonstrate an online school that is:

a) A free online course that is accreditated
b) That same course has no government contribution or subsidy.

My opponent erroneously states that the above is not possible because the accreditation has not been setup.    k12.com is the largest supplier of online k-12 curriculum in the United States.   They have tuition offerings and "free" offerings.  The "free" offerings are subsidized by the state the student resides in.  It is accredited under many agencies that accredited current private school offerings.   HERE

The regulatory and accredited framework is there.  However, nothing is provided free.  Either the student pays for it, or the government pays for it.  My opponent states the following financial options are available to ensure that the fundamental right of access to education is maintained:

    • Financial grants from the schools
    • Scholarships from the schools
    • Charities
    • Philanthropists
    • Student Loans
    • Financial Aid
    • Welfare.

I will address the practicality of those options in the Costs section.  However, I have bolded the last two because they cannot apply.  The quote I made above, my opponent wants to eliminate all government-sponsored options.  Therefore the government cannot provide financial aid, welfare, or government-backed student loans.  So therein he is expecting the schools, or charities to cover the entire costs.  This does not make education accessible.   It does not guarantee the right to educate, a statement my opponent agreed with.

My opponent claims that home school provides better social development.   The study sighted quotes the following

"Many studies of homeschooled
children’s social behavior (including this one) are too simplistic."

The study also said there was a clear development issue for "psychomotor skills".  

I will admit that the study had some positive references (albeit the information is 25 years old and does not reflect the prevalence of electronic devices).  One of the reasons sighted was because home school parents were very conscientious about ensuring social development.  They had actively chosen to homeschool.  However, my opponent wants to force this responsibility on everyone if they cannot afford or get admitted to a reasonable brick and mortar school.

Let's be clear, homeschooling, and online learning are not the same thing.  Online learning is just a resource that is used, it is not the be and end-all solution, especially for kindergarten to high school age bracket.   So studies about home-schooling do not necessarily translate to an online education model.

My opponent states for special needs, that the private sector will fill in this gap, and the same funding models are available.  However as stated above, no government funds could be used.  

So now you have the families of over 6 million kids struggling to find funding for their special needs children because the government has taken all education services away.  


My opponent states a few things under this section which I disagree with.   First  I do not agree that:

"This entire argument from both sides comes down to one question, is public or private education of higher quality"

Access, costs to the families, and the overall economic implications are my primary concerns.  Quality is a clear issue but not the primary driving factor.

My opponent agrees Charter schools are bad for education, and claims it is because of the government's role.   The only government role in a charter school is for 

a) Accreditation and accreditation enforcement
b) Providing funds.

That's it.  Everything else is private.  All the employees and assets are private.  The government has another role.  We agreed originally that accreditation was important, so that leaves money.  My opponent is suggesting the money coming from the government is somehow different.  


My opponent states there are free options, but has not provided an accredited nongovernment supported example.   I stated above a list of the financial options my opponent suggested.

  • Financial grants from the schools
  • Scholarships from the schools

Those two concepts only work when the school has enough spare money to provide for the grants.  This is very difficult to support in a for-profit private model.   It ends up driving up the costs for everyone who can afford it.

  • Charities
  • Philanthropists

These options are difficult. There is a limited amount of charity money that is donated every year.  If one charity requires 500M-1B per year to support education, other charities will suffer.  There could be serious questions about the fairness of how charities distribute funds.  


As I stated, just having access to education through free online programs is not an effective investment in education.  Countries that treat education as an asset have what is called a knowledge-based economy.  My opponent's option of making that money available to welfare that can be used for schools is the same as paying charter schools, which is the same as being involved.

However, this is contrary to my opponent's position.


My opponent is implying that. the only way to provide a faith-based education is to eliminate all government funding.  He states that because a government option is there people do not opt for faith-based education.   78% of the 35,000 private schools in the US are faith-based. Side note 25% of all schools in the US are private (same source).  There are plenty of options for faith-based education options.  

So I do not see what the compelling issue is that needs to be solved, that justifies drastically impairing access  to education, and driving up the costs 


In short,  I repeat that my opponent has agreed with all of my foundational statements., and through those admissions, my opponent continues to contradict himself. My opponent's options are fiscally detrimental to a significant percentage of the population. My opponent's objectives of additional faith-based education exist with 30k private schools, and parents can continue investing time and energy into either homeschooling or after school/weekend programs. The fundamental right of education and the benefits of investing therein cannot be solved by an exclusive private system.

The resolution fails.

Return To Top | Posted:
2020-05-07 06:22:49
| Speak Round
Bugsy460Bugsy460 (PRO)
I've really enjoyed our debate JackSprat. This is my first full debate on the website, and I'm happy that you've made it fun and educational.

Before I go into the arguments, I'd like to clarify that me and JackSprat made an agreement to not use any new sources, so I'll summarize the round and describe why I deserve to win the round. As before, I'll use the headings JackSprat set-up during the second round that we both continued into the third round.

Fundamental Right

The question you have to ask yourself is, "Will the right to education be infringed if education is privatized?" The answer is simply, no.

First, my opponent says I couldn't provide a source to show the possibility exists, but I provided 25 online options in my original source from the first round and I said the burden was on him to prove that they all don't fulfill his requirements. He provided one example that doesn't. Make him prove there aren't options for free online education out of my list of 25.

He tries to use my statement about government ownership of education against me, but he completely misrepresents the point I was trying to make. I was saying a system that has inherent evil in it, such as the public education system, shouldn't be tolerated. I'm not advocating for anarchism, I'm simply advocating for privatized education. Unless providing lower income families resources they need while having everybody else pay for programs has inherent evils my opponent would like to bring up, his comment doesn't make sense. I've shown that over 20% of Americans are on welfare already. To say this already existent system of wealth redistribution is invalid because of my comment on the evil of public education is a gross misuse of my point. I'll get into what my point was in the cultural genocide point, but realize his use of my statement doesn't make sense unless he's advocating for the complete erasure of all welfare programs.

We now come to the social skills of homeschooled children. The study I cited isn't perfect, but picking at details doesn't disprove it. The opponent first complains about the fact that "Many studies of homeschooled children’s social behavior (including this one) are too simplistic."  It's too late to find more evidence, so we have to accept mine as the best on the setting, which shows that homeschooled children, on balance, have more developed social skills than public school kids on average. The only complaint is a lack of evidence into the entire subject, which can't be helped, the age of the evidence, and one of the skills being tested was scored lower for homeschooled children. One skill doesn't outweigh better social skills on balance.

Special needs kids will still have access to education, because as previously stated, unless my opponent is advocating for the abolishment of welfare programs and disability programs, then these already existing government programs would work fine. Unless he advocates for their abolishment, they still exist in a world with privatized education.

Private Sector

When I said the main point of argumentation was the quality of education, I meant of the private sector section. Also, his claim that it wasn't a primary factor proves something scary about about my opponents advocacy. If he's advocating for awful education just because it's accessible to everyone (even though superior, privatized option would be just as accessible), this shows that the educational value of schooling is not at the heart of the neg.

We then get back into the charter VS private school argument. He tries to tie similarities, and there are similarities, because he knows that the evidence is not on his side. All of the evidence showing that private schools are superior for the education of students talks about private schools. My opponents evidence only focuses on charter schools. Obviously, there is a difference, otherwise these statistics wouldn't create such a wild difference. Don't let these arbitrary similarities distract from the fact that the evidence clearly shows the benefit of private education.


There are online free options. I provided a list of 25 that he didn't disprove, showing there is free online programs in place. Also, there are private charitable funding and welfare options. Private charities work because there is already private scholarships for private schools. If more money goes into the system and comes out somewhere else, than that cause is deemed important by individuals on a mass scale. He then claims that schools would have to raise prices to afford another student, but that depends on how you look at it. While there would be costs for supplies and food if necessary, a lot of the costs wouldn't be drastically increased. For example, there is already a teacher in every classroom teaching, so the cost of the education wouldn't go up to provide it to a few students. The costs go exponentially down.

He also tries to block access for welfare programs, but unless he advocates for their removal, then they would still exist in a world with privatized education, meaning there is no inherent barrier to education from a cost perspective. Government welfare programs would still exist and help those who cannot afford an education.

Economic Investment

There still is an investment the government makes in education. Through the accreditation and regulation of private facilities, the government ensures that there is a level of education being provided. He then tries to compare welfare programs to involvement, but this is completely different. The education system is currently socialized, but I advocate for the privatization of the education system. This doesn't negate the existence of welfare programs, or say they have no place funding lower income families. For example, SNAP (food stamp) programs exist, but that doesn't mean the entire food industry is socialized. He is creating a straw man argument of educational privatization by acting like it encompasses welfare programs. There still is an investment being made, and by ensuring that the education is the higher quality that privatization will create, we can create a better economic investment in education.

Cultural Genocide 

First, he says there's plenty of access to faith based schools. If there is plenty of access, then he does one of two things. He either admits that there isn't barriers of access to private education, disproving the rest of his points, or he admits that there is barriers in the status quo, and only the financial elite would have access to faith-based education. His contradiction either proves there is no access issues, or he thinks that only the rich should be allowed to preserve their cultural heritage. My point is that because the current access issues because of the public option, faith based education isn't available to all, causing huge cultural issues. We've shown that this conflict within adolescents leads to higher suicidal ideation.


There's five questions you have to ask yourself to see if privatization is better,
1. Does privatization reduce access to education?
2. Is private education higher quality?
3. Is it cheaper to utilize private or public education?
4. Is the economic investment that comes from education funding still going to be there?
5. Is cultural genocide a legitimate issue that comes from public education?

The answers to all these questions rule in the favor of private education. I've proven that through welfare, scholarships, charitable contributions, and financial aid, access to education, the cost of education, and the economic investment are all still completely viable. On top of this, there are free online options that guarantee all of this. Not only is cheap or free access guaranteed, but it would be higher quality than public education. The only evidence against it is about charter schools, but this is about privatization, not creating charter schools. So we can guarantee free or cheap education for those who need it, while it is educationally better for the students. The final question is that of the cultural genocide. Public education being an option stops access to a lot of private schools, because if you're lower income, you have to go to the secular public school. This leads to a lack of faith based religion, which can create ideological tension within developing students. By privatizing education, we can ensure that parents will have a legitimate choice on where to send their kids.

If you want high quality, accessible to all schooling that respects your cultural decisions, you have to for the privatization of education.

Return To Top | Posted:
2020-05-07 11:53:45
| Speak Round
JackSpratJackSprat (CON)
I welcome Bugsy460 to the site., and echo his articulate gratitude for the debate.  

I am going to break this down and summarize my opponent's positions and demonstrate how the resolution has not been proven.


1.   Quality.

My opponent claims private schools are better quality.  I certainly agree that some private schools are of better quality.  However, I have demonstrated clearly that charter schools are a private version of schools.  They meet the criteria,  The only government involvement is accreditation and providing money.  My opponent did not dispute this.   So we have a clear private scholastic model, that shows rampant problems that my opponent agrees exist.  

Free online courses cannot equal quality.  That is not education.  As I stated previously in round 2, online courses are a tool for educators, and not a replacement, My opponent has not demonstrated any clear form of quality associated with online exclusive learning, which is a cornerstone to address the access problem.  My opponent sites his list of 25 online learning sources.  20 of those are for university-level courses.   out of the remaining 5, only 1 provides accredited k-12 learning, and it gets state funds based on enrolled students.  That is not demonstrative of a high-quality online learning system.

One study from Britain, where the focus was on British private schools is not transferable to privatizing an entire system of 50M children.  

My opponent has not demonstrated or proven,  private schools are better quality and would be better quality in his full private model.

2. Make the Taxing Fair!!

My opponent stated that only users of the service should pay for the services.  He specifically stated in Round 1 that 37% of American adults won't need the education services for their children and it is not fair for them to be taxed.  However, he contradicts this by saying the government should provide individuals in need welfare to pay for his privatized schooling.  Where do the funds come from to provide a welfare check?  General tax revenues.  So if my opponent is trying to balance the scales of equity, as he stated in round 1, he cannot use tax revenues from noneducation users to cover the costs or supplement those who do use it.  That invalidates his premise of financial equity. 

By following my opponent's objective, all government money collected via taxes would be immune from educational contributions.  This limits the source of money to the individuals, the private sector, and charities.  For a family with two children, using a non-inflation rate of $7k per year (by my opponent's reference in round 1)  for private education, a family would have to expend $260k, and that is before any post-secondary training (13 years of school).  In the interest of fairness, that does not seem fair.    

3.  What about Faith?

My opponent argues that the government's stewardship of education eliminates faith options because free is better than not.   I demonstrated in round 3 that 25% of the existing schools in the US are private and nearly 80% of them are faith-based.

My opponent suggested in his closing arguments that this proves his point, that there is poor access to faith-based education.  I have demonstrated in each round that there is nothing by law, or I practice that prevents faith-based education.  The SCOTUS has judged in its favor, and there are 10;'s of thousands of schools in the US that are faith-based.  My opponent argues that privatizing education will allow the markets to fill in and provide those education options.

But if those options had market viability, why don't they exist now?  My opponent suggested it is because there is a free option.   Yet my opponent agrees that the current private school model, which he claims should be forced on everyone, is only available to the financial elite.

"and only the financial elite would have access to faith-based education."

I can't reconcile this logic.  Either the private system is good, and everyone should be forced to use it, or it is a service only available to the financial elite.  

My opponent has not demonstrated how privatization of education will lead to higher faith-based pedagogy.  



I argued, and my opponent agreed, there is a fundamental right to education.  I have demonstrated my opponent's plan would seriously impair this right, My opponent agreed in his closing.  A full private system, as he defines it and we have now limited access to the financial elite.    Therefore the resolution fails on this ground alone.


I then argued that countries need to invest in education, which my opponent agreed.  However, my opponent believes that access to the Internet is the same as an investment.  It is not.  I showed the multiple levels of an impact if a child does not have a school to go to.  My opponent could not demonstrate how his no expenditure by the government actually equates to investment.  Therefore the resolution fails.


Finally, I argued that quality would be a huge issue.  I demonstrated that Charter schools are private.  The only difference is the cheque for each student is signed by the government and not the parent.    I showed huge problems with Charter schools, and my opponent agreed. Charter schools paint a prophetic mural on what a fully privatized education system would look like, i.e. the one being advocated by my opponent.  It is not nice to look at.  As we clearly see a fundamental problem with the quality of education in a fully private model, the resolution fails.

For those reasons, the resolution fails.

Return To Top | Posted:
2020-05-07 14:34:08
| Speak Round

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Yo. Another properly completed debate! Congratulations!
Hey just a “in-case-you-didn’t-realise”... you can set things like definitions, and the way you want sources and rounds to be handled in the Rules when you set the debate up. That way everyone knows what’s up before they accept, and it also helps the judges out when judging.
Also, this site has a thing called “Reply Speeches” as an optional feature. If selected, the site will add an extra round with half the character limit, specifically for summing up your case. It will also reverse the order in that final round meaning that PRO gets the last word. This typically counters any advantage that CON has from being able to be the “reply” voice in each round.

Or you can do it the way you did it here as well. Whatever floats your boat!
Nice debate, I’ll give it a proper read through when I have more time.
Posted 2020-05-08 13:34:04
That's not how I meant it, but it is what it is.
Posted 2020-05-07 15:04:32
Thanks for that. I think you shot yourself in the foot by agreeing in your closing that private school is only available to the financial elite
Posted 2020-05-07 14:35:15
Of course mate
Posted 2020-05-07 03:34:11
For the last round, would you like to agree no new sources? If I added new ones, you'd have one speech to answer, and if you added new ones, I wouldn't be able to refute it. You can use sources in your current speech, but not the next one if you agree.
Posted 2020-05-07 03:14:20
Sorry about that. Thanks for asking.
Posted 2020-05-06 10:54:09
Your Washington Post source just links back to the debate. Could you send me the link through the comments so I can look at the source?
Posted 2020-05-06 08:05:01
You made me work for that answer@!!!!!
Posted 2020-05-05 15:44:53
cool. we can keep this back channel open for sure
Posted 2020-05-05 14:16:02
I know there isn't any cross examination, but if you want to ask questions in the comments, I'll answer if you'll do the same for me. Cross examination is good, I just don't like that we have to sit for so much time.
Posted 2020-05-05 14:10:29
Yes. Privatization means no government ownership. It does not include government contributions or regulation. Do you want to include universities and colleges in education?
Posted 2020-05-04 01:45:22
We agree education is a primary school, high school, etc. that normally is a public school. And you are saying it should be privatized?
Posted 2020-05-04 01:06:40
Hello again, JackSprat! This one has no Cross X in good news! Any words we need defined?
Posted 2020-05-04 00:49:07
The judging period on this debate is over

Previous Judgments

2020-05-10 17:38:07
nzlockieJudge: nzlockie    TOP JUDGE
Win awarded to: JackSprat
Phew - well, this was a very even debate. I feel like both sides missed opportunities to really put the foot down on the throat, and as a result it ended up being quite a tricky one to judge... however I still judged!
PRO's main points were that Private schools provide better results and a more rounded education, Private schooling was cheaper, and that it was a more moral solution than Public schooling. This last point was REALLY weak and I struggled to see it sufficiently substantiated. So I'm considering that one as defeated by CON who argued that the facility for religious education would still exist.

For this judge, I didn't find PRO's point regarding the costs to be a strong one. Firstly, it was apparent that while cost may have been lower from a total viewpoint, CON quite rightly pointed out that there's a significant portion of society that doesn't pay any tax, and so for those people, any amount is going to be significantly higher - to the point where they wouldn't afford it. I feel that CON was successful in arguing that Govt handouts would not exist for this in the spirit of the resolution - although if PRO had argued this head on with different language, I may have been swayed. It was a bad point to not hash out completely, because I counted CON's point that most governments have agreed that education is a human right. So WHO is paying for it?
PRO's strongest argument on the cost front was the evidence of 25 free online schools. This is one area where CON dropped the ball for me. There was no strong attack of the specific source that PRO put up even though PRO repeatedly asked for it. Throwing the burden back on PRO to prove that they had no govt funding was seen as a bit of a cop out. You can't/shouldn't ask someone to prove a negative. HOWEVER - the issue did not go unaddressed. One of CON's strongest rebuttals was regarding the effect that self learning, or home schooling would have on society. CON should have really hammered this point a bit more eloquently in my opinion, but the bare words were there and I don't feel like the point was ever refuted strongly enough.
So I'm giving PRO's cost argument as a narrow win to CON.
PRO's strongest argument was the results one. CON firstly tried to defeat it by throwing up Charter schools. I would have preferred that PRO rebut this a bit more clearly instead of relying on the source he cited to do it for him, but he did it well enough. I do NOT accept CON’s contention that Charter School results are pretty much what Private School results would look like. To be clear - I agree with him on a personal level, but CON never clearly spells out the reasons WHY I should believe this. Give me some narrative to make me see why I should discount the actual numbers PRO gave me.
So I give that point to PRO. Unfortunately, superior results doesn't trump the difficulty presented for people to access education so CON wins.

CON had some points as well, they were helpfully listed at the beginning of each round. To save my typing, I've kind of addressed the salient parts of CON's constructive in this judgement already.

BOTH PARTIES: Guys I think you both suffered at different times from not really hammering your point home fully. My guess is that the argument sounded complete in your heads, but as a Judge I need to be convinced by what you write. The WAY you explain your point is crucial in a close debate like this one.
Both parties were guilty at times from using the sources to argue for you. I've said it before - don't expect a judge to read your source. It's not up to us to do that. It's YOUR responsibility to tell us what the source says, or to tell us why your opponent's source is wrong. So when you reference something from the source, make sure that narrative stands alone. CON did a better job of this than PRO, but I think both of you could have done better.
PRO - You need to set your definitions in the first round! You can't wait until the third round to call a technicality on a definition that wasn't set earlier! I realise that you guys agreed on definitions in the comments, but that doesn't count as part of the debate. Even if you had agreed on it, as a Judge, I still need to know what those are so you should have stated them in your first round - just like you did with the privatisation one. The only exception to this is that it's acceptable to use the Rules to lay out definitions. Judges are supposed to read the rules before judging, so that would be OK. To be safe though, I'd probably still do it in round.

CON - I feel like you left some arguments to chance that really could have been tested a bit more rigorously. So Private schools have higher results... WHY IS THAT? Had you followed that lead, it would probably have solidified that fact that your charter schools were indeed a decent litmus of how a fully privatised system would look. It could have also damaged the cost argument, as a lot of those benefits are cost related and not necessarily easily scalable. I'd encourage you to really look deeper into your opponent's arguments to see if there are any obvious flaws to exploit. At best you might break them, and at worst it makes the judges think that a rock solid argument might not be so solid.

That's it - it was a great debate. Well argued. I thought it was really close so I'm sorry if someone disagrees with my scoring, hopefully we get a few more judgments on this one. Too bad the judging period is so short!
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2020-05-11 22:07:21
ccullen123Judge: ccullen123
Win awarded to: Bugsy460
2020-05-12 20:05:27
dpowell3543Judge: dpowell3543    TOP JUDGE
Win awarded to: JackSprat
This was a very interesting debate and I loved reading it. Both sides made very valid points, but Con made the better arguments. Pro made some good points, but didn't look at a lot of information. The online classes are a good example. They're known to be terrible schools, producing very low GPA's and test scores. They also seem to forget that 6% of all children have absolutely no access to the internet. But they also failed to really show how beneficial privatizing schools are. So far the only benefit they've provided were religion related. Now while strengthening our culture is good, its just a small benefit that only really helps a small group of people, rather than everyone. Con does a good job at showing the many benefits that are offered and provided by public schools and even sheds some light on how eliminating public education can have some negative effects on the country, both socially and economically. Though, both parties provided pretty good and interesting arguments, my vote must go to Con.
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