That's what Steve Barnett charged. He thinks Checker is arguing to "hold back" the middle class so that poor kids can catch up and close the achievement gap. Needless to say, Checker doesn't agree with that characterization, but admits that he agrees with (not-so-far-left) liberal Bruce Fuller, who believes in targeting resources on poor kids rather than spreading them around.
Sara Mead points to evidence from Oklahoma that universal preschool is helping poor kids the most. And anyway, what's so wrong with giving middle class parents a way to help their kids?
Checker responded: Sure, if funds were unlimited, it's not such a bad thing to use tax dollars to subsidize middle class parents who are already putting up the funds. But if resources ARE limited, why not start by providing intensive programs for the children who need it most? (Is that a far-left view? Your call.)
Steve admits that there's nothing wrong with "starting" with targeted programs and going from there. "But we've been starting with targeted programs for 40 years." It's straining his patience. There are ethical, educational, and economic reasons to serve...