Thursday, October 31, 2013


From the legal section of the online Free Dictionary we get the definition of consideration:
Something of value given by both parties to a contract that induces them to enter into the agreement to exchange mutual performances.
So what would be "consideration" in the context of our most popular social contract--public education? On the one hand taxpayers pony up cash that is converted into a public education. That part is simple.

But what of value do students or their parents offer? Is it a commitment to acquire the education paid for by others*? Is it mere words or are students and parents held accountable for meeting this commitment? To date it has been the former.

Maybe it's time to balance out this contractual equation. Since it is impractical to ensure that students and parents do not or cannot renege it is clear equity will only be delivered by addressing the other side of the equation. That we can fix.

* We'll not go into it here but if you start with a simple average of $10K per student per year you can do the math and figure out how long it will take for the average family with three children to pay back the cost of their children's education. We should all live so long.