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Time to Close Every Single Charter School, Every One; Steven Singer at the Diane Ravitch blog

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' Put simply: charter schools are a bad idea. They always were a bad idea. And it is high time we put an end to them.The problem with charter schools isn’t that they have been implemented badly. Nor is it that some are for-profit and others are not. The problem is the concept, itself. Charter schools enroll only 6 percent of students nationwide yet they gobble up billions of dollars in funding. In my home state of Pennsylvania, they cost Commonwealth taxpayers more than $1.8 billion a year and take more than 25 percent of the state’s basic education funding. That’s for merely 180 schools with 135,000 students!'

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I began teaching in 1963,; Ba and BS in Education -Brooklyn College. I have the equivalent of 2 additional Master's, mainly in Literacy Studies and Graphic Design. I was the only seventh grade teacher of English from 1990 -1999 at East Side (more...)
 

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Susan Lee Schwartz

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In case you have been too busy to follow the demolition of our public schools hereis how it works in states that are. speeding to end public education:

PeterGreene reports what happened when Governor Tom Wolf really hurt the feelings of the charter lobby. He said that charter schools are NOT public schools.

"When Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolftrotted out his budget last month, he made it a point to note that he was raising money for public schools-- and that he had some definite ideas about which schools are public and which schools are not.

"He wants to see more of those basic education dollars to school districts get distributed through the state's fair funding formula. He also wants to address concerns related to cyber charter schools, which he referred to as "the growing cost of privatization of education in our public schools."

In this post, Mercedes Schneider tries to untangle the mess created by lack of oversight in all-charter New Orleans.

Oklahoma: Officials Can't Track "Ghost Students" in Online Charter School Scandal

Carol Burriswrote this article about the confluence of charter schools and greed in Florida.

Just when you think you have heard it all, there is yet another story of cupidity associated with "nonprofit charter schools."

The corruption never ends.

Florida's First All-Charter District: An Investigation

Submitted on Thursday, Sep 12, 2019 at 2:58:29 PM

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Susan Lee Schwartz

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Jan Resseger: Eight Essential Facts About Charter Schools

The Charter Industry has led a sterling marketing campaign to persuade the public that they are public schools, that they are far better than "traditional" public schools, and that they are hotbeds of innovation.

None of this is true. They are privately managed schools. They receive public money but they are not public schools. Other than those that select their students, they do not get higher test scores than real public schools, and many are far worse. The only "innovation" that charters can claim is "no excuses" discipline, which looks like schools of a century ago.

Here are Jan's facts you should know:

If you value the role of public schoolslocally governed, publicly owned and operatedwhose mission is to serve the needs and protect the rights of every child, you can be more supportive if you know the facts about charter schools. The public schools across the United States enroll 50 million students, 90 percent. Charter schools suck money out of state budgets and public school districts while they enroll only 6 percent of American students. We all need to be actively refuting the myths and calling politicians on their errors when they betray their ignorance about the problems posed by the privatization of public education.

Here are eight facts to keep in mind:

  1. While their promoters try to brand them as "public charter schools," charter schools are a form of school privatization. Charter schools are private contractors whose expenses are paid with tax dollars. Their boards operate privatelyvery often without transparency.
  2. For-profit charter schools are permitted in only two statesArizona and Wisconsin. In the 43 other states whose laws permit charter schools, the schools must be nonprofits.
  3. Nonprofit charter schools are increasingly operatedand often highly controlledby for-profit Charter Management Organizations (CMOs). Sometimes, in something called a sweeps contract, a nonprofit turns over 90 percent or more of its operating dollars to the for-profit management company it has hired to run the schoolmeaning that the for-profit essentially runs the school. But that school is technically a nonprofit. Eighty percent of Michigan's charter schools are operated by for-profit CMOs.
  4. Charter schools are established in state law in 45 states and the District of Columbia. (West Virginia, the 45th state, just passed charter school enabling legislation in June, 2019.) There are no federal laws that set up or regulate charter schools.
  5. Across the states, charter school fraud and corruption has run rampant due to weak regulation by state legislatures.
  6. Charter schools and their supporters and lobbyists have used their power to promote charter schools across the state legislatures. Groups like the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools, the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), ExcelinEd (Jeb Bush's group), and the American Federation for Children (Betsy DeVos's group) have lobbied for charter school expansion, and deregulation. Many state legislatures have passed "model" bills which were written and distributed by ALEC's Education Committee to members of state legislatures who are also members of ALEC.
  7. No state has passed additional taxes to fund charter schools. When states create charter schools, children who leave public schools to enroll in charters carry away state dollars and essential funding from the public school districts where the children were previously enrolled (see here and here). Public school districts are unable to compensate fully for the loss the public dollars that used to pay for public school services but have now been redirected to a privatized sector.
  8. Since it was begun in 1994, the federal Charter Schools Program has served as a sort of venture capital fund with grants to states to fuel the startup and expansion of the charter school sector. More than $1 billion has been wasted on charter schools which never opened or eventually shut down. Proponents of the program, including Education Secretary Betsy DeVos have claimed this waste of tax dollars is acceptable because the money fueled educational innovation and entrepreneurshipeven if there was a high rate of failure.

Submitted on Thursday, Sep 12, 2019 at 3:00:20 PM

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Some of the charter school proponents may have had good intentions, but they aren't the ones who got the laws passed to make them legal. The latter are the vast majority, and they are racketeers, as described in RICO.


The same is true of the for-profit higher education schools and the student loan program, another huge racket that has nothing to do with improving education and everything to do with taking (not making) profit at the expense of others.

Submitted on Thursday, Sep 12, 2019 at 7:20:34 PM

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