Rep. Michele Bachmann may have stepped aside last week in Iowa, but at least in terms of education her beliefs continue to be well represented among the remaining GOP candidates.
Indeed, if her departure from the field left any vacuum at all, it’s been filled neatly by former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum.
All three current front-runners favor limiting the federal government’s role in education, but beyond that there are significant differences in their platforms. A few quick observations then, starting with Santorum, who is no fan of public schools.
“Just call them what they are,” he is quoted as saying in a Politico story last March. “Public schools? That’s a nice way of putting it. These are government-run schools.”
Santorum is a proponent of both home schooling and private-school vouchers. He would fund abstinence-only education.
He’s particularly opposed to publicly funded early-childhood education, which he refers to as “government indoctrination.”
“Of course, the government wants their hands on your children as fast as they can,” he told the Des Moines Register last summer. “That is why I opposed all these early starts and pre-early starts, and early-early starts. They want your children from the womb so they can indoctrinate your children as to what they want them to be.”