Jonathan Small | October 21, 2016
Free Market Friday: For pre-K choices
Next week in downtown Oklahoma City, several organizations are hosting a statewide conference on early-childhood issues.
Though our friends on the left have a heart for children, in my view they can tend to place too much emphasis on government solutions. And though government involvement can make sense when dealing with the most vulnerable, at-risk children among us, policymakers must resist the misguided (and expensive) urge to impose universal, one-size-fits-all solutions for all Oklahoma families.
Consider, for example, early childhood education. Any discussion of the issue must start with this: Parents, not government officials, have the moral right to determine a child’s path.
Many parents choose to put their 3- or 4-year-olds in a preschool program in a traditional public school. Others prefer a public charter school. Still others prefer a private preschool.
The parents wanting to choose a private preschool shouldn’t be penalized financially (by having to pay taxes and tuition). Oklahoma policymakers should level the playing field.
Jonathan Small, C.P.A., serves as President and joined the staff in December of 2010. Previously, Jonathan served as a budget analyst for the Oklahoma Office of State Finance, as a fiscal policy analyst and research analyst for the Oklahoma House of Representatives, and as director of government affairs for the Oklahoma Insurance Department. Small’s work includes co-authoring “Economics 101” with Dr. Arthur Laffer and Dr. Wayne Winegarden, and his policy expertise has been referenced by The Oklahoman, the Tulsa World, National Review, the L.A. Times, The Hill, the Wall Street Journal and the Huffington Post. His weekly column “Free Market Friday” is published by the Journal Record and syndicated in 27 markets. A recipient of the American Legislative Exchange Council’s prestigious Private Sector Member of the Year award, Small is nationally recognized for his work to promote free markets, limited government and innovative public policy reforms. Jonathan holds a B.A. in Accounting from the University of Central Oklahoma and is a Certified Public Accountant.