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Commentary :: DNC
Right Wing Charter Schools
31 May 2004
Not only have charter schools failed to deliver the goods as promised, but their champions have often used a double standard to evaluate them.
Excerpted from a new article by educational researcher and author Gerald W. Bracey.

In this article, rejected for publication by major educational journals, Bracey takes apart the Right's obsession with defunding public education. The full article can be found at:

valetc.com

Not only have charters failed to deliver the goods as promised, but their champions have often used a double standard to evaluate them. Charter advocates labeled public schools with low test scores as "failing schools." When charter schools display low test scores-- and they have, overwhelmingly--their advocates say they are working with difficult to educate students. The demographics of charters mitigate against high test scores, don'cha know. This is, of course, precisely the argument that school bashers reject as a pathetic excuse if it comes from the public schools. ("Charter Pupils Test Scores Low" read a December, 2002 headline in the Cincinnati Enquirer; "So often, the populations of community [charter] schools are students who have not had success in traditional school districts," said an Ohio Department of Education spokesperson in the article. "Substandard Charter Fail 17,000 Pupils" exclaimed an October, 2003 headline in the Detroit News. "We tend to draw more students from low-income groups" said an officer of the educational management organization that runs the worst performing schools.)

Charter school advocates have not been content to just skewer public schools, but have also registered dismay over other education reform efforts. In Charter Schools in Action,Chester Finn, Bruno Manno, and Greg Vanourek declared that despite "barrels of good intentions, reform efforts have yielded meager dividends." Finn once fumed, "The public school system as we know has proved that it cannot reform itself. It is an ossified government monopoly…." Hence, goes the illogic, charter schools must be better.


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Re: Right Wing Charter Schools
01 Jun 2004
Though I can gist what you mean by "Right Wing Charter Schools" I think the title is misleading. Due to the budget put forth by our right-wing governor it’s become increasingly hard to land teaching jobs. Also with the fact that Charter Schools are often filled with more troubled kids whose poor grades and conduct are usually why public schools refer them there in the first place which may be attributed to the fact that those kids may score worse than public school kids. The fact of the matter is many of the teachers at charter schools are often left-leaning compassionate liberals seeking alternative learning environments and an outlet for which they may make an impact on those students who’ve become disenfranchised w/ school. Now I think the idea that the state is helping to fund these schools especially when it can barely fund Public schools is insane and wrong and with that I agree totally, but in the same way it’s important that people distinguish Americans from the profiteers calling the shots in this country, people should distinguish those working and attending Charter Schools from the profiteers behind the scene. Nonetheless I agree totally with your sentiment.
Re: Right Wing Charter Schools
01 Jun 2004
Though I can gist what you mean by "Right Wing Charter Schools" I think the title is misleading. Due to the budget put forth by our right-wing governor it’s become increasingly hard to land teaching jobs. Also with the fact that Charter Schools are often filled with more troubled kids whose poor grades and conduct are usually why public schools refer them there in the first place which may be attributed to the fact that those kids may score worse than public school kids. The fact of the matter is many of the teachers at charter schools are often left-leaning compassionate liberals seeking alternative learning environments and an outlet for which they may make an impact on those students who’ve become disenfranchised w/ school. Now I think the idea that the state is helping to fund these schools especially when it can barely fund Public schools is insane and wrong and with that I agree totally, but in the same way it’s important that people distinguish Americans from the profiteers calling the shots in this country, people should distinguish those working and attending Charter Schools from the profiteers behind the scene. Nonetheless I agree totally with your sentiment.