Three recent stories about Charter Schools and the school deform movement should make readers ask, "Is this what they mean by school reform?"
They are private citizens who get to spend taxpayer dollars to educate children. They argue that the market will determine success. Unfortunately, they get to define what success looks like -- not the public whose taxes fund the school, nor voters who are the ultimate policy makers in a democratic society.
Would any parent or student -- who had a real choice in terms of learning environments -- settle for a Success Academy school? Above all, why would any person even think about imposing that regimen on other peoples' children, as they do when they engage in the mass charterization of urban schools?
While it may be desirable, even necessary, to deflate the self aggrandizing mythology of Success Academy by documenting reality, it is also important to remember that the charter network is not actually the illness. It is merely an extreme rash that has broken on the surface.
Success Academy Fort Greene (SAFG) opened in the 2013-14 school year as an elementary school with grades K-1, with the intention of adding a grade each year until the school served grades K-4.
Critics claim, with ample evidence, that a combination of self-selection for admission, high suspension rates and high expulsion rates distill the Success student body to those who are more likely to do well on tests and thereby burnish their reputation.
While Success Academy students do better than average on high-stakes assessments, there is a rising crescendo of criticism because of Moskowitz's use of wealthy political connections to promote her empire, and accusations that Success Academy suspends poorly performing students to drive them out of the schools and boost its average test scores.
The best action that either of you can take for Black kids is to decide to stop suspending them now. Commit to the hard work of being creative in finding new restorative justice models. Support organizations that truly consist of the people that they are supposed to help.
In her letter to John Merrow, Eva Moskowitz showed that in order to protect the reputation of Success Academies, she is willing to publicly release the specifics of a student's disciplinary file without parental permission.
Merrow also reported the suspension rates at Success Academy Charter schools are almost three times higher than in regular New York City K-12 public schools. Other studies have found similarly disproportionately high suspension rates at Success Academy schools.
The New York Times Magazine has a long article about Eva Moskowitz and her chain of charter schools in New York City. But what Moskowitz does to get high test scores is not a model for public education or even for other charters.
There's no legal limit to what you can be paid as the charter school operator. The only limits to your salary are the limits set by your own sense of shame. If you have no shame, then ka-ching, my friend. Ka. Ching.
After getting hammered by the charter lobby, de Blasio appeared to change his tone. In a late March speech in Riverside Church
This is a mere sideshow. Comparing schools -- charter vs. neighborhood public; suburban vs. urban; public vs. private -- is based on a fundamental misunderstanding of education in America.
Jindal’s op-ed ended with an attack on President Obama and the Department of Justice, whom Jindal has sparred with on the