The Smithfield Herald’s lead editorial Tuesday gives a wry thumbs up to “No Child Left Behind”-mandated public school choice.

All things being equal, this editorial would go something like this: We hope parents will show their commitment to Selma Elementary School by keeping their children there.

But all things are not equal. For years now, Selma parents with means* have been sending their children elsewhere. Now, parents without means have the chance to do so. …

We suspect that Selma Elementary will emerge from all of this a better school. But schools are secondary to the students who attend them. The Board of Education, to its credit, has long deferred to students, at least those whose parents can afford to send them to better schools. Now, the federal government is deferring to students regardless of means. That has to be a good thing.


* To show how low a threshhold the paper is considering, the “means” they refer to is not about private school tuition, but simply a parent’s?ability to transport a child to a different public school within Johnston County.? And Selma is not a remote rural area far from other schools, either.