Dear JCPS: Regarding Corporate-chartered schools (C-c schools)
Governor Bevin states that: a) charter schools are really public schools, b) they offer competition to the public school system, c) they offer an educational choice for parents and students. Here is a reality check for these assertions.
- So called charter schools are really Corporate-chartered schools. Why, because
they are financially supported by Corporate "contributions" to non-profit C-c schools.
- A recent Wall Street Journal op. ed. invited investors to invest in C-c schools that could bring an annual ten percent return on investment .
- These investors include former tennis star Andre Agassi, exiled imam/businessman, and
unlisted corporations, private investors, and property developers.
- Investor identity is protected. They are "donating" i.e. investing, in non-profit educational
programs, for which they receive tax benefits.
- C-c schools are not subject to vigorous financial or administrative monitoring.
Funding for such monitoring in frequently not included in authorizing legislation
- generally such legislation is a copy prepared by ALEC, a conservative planning body, that
circulates such legislation throughout the states.
- Program monitoring by the Corporate body is limited. Funding for state monitoring services
are not included in legislation placing a burden on public operations. As such, C-c
legislation appears to be a blank check from the legislature to the Corporations.
- Actual administrative operations are typically done by a Corporate out of state Board.
- Corporate Boards establish administrative salaries, rental and construction costs,
equipment and service subcontracts, curriculum, and personnel wages and
working conditions. As such, the Corporations and their investors are the prime
administrative body for all operations. The tax payers, who contribute to the C-c
schools expenses, have no direct input or choice as to how their tax dollars are spent.
- Corporate interest have donated to local ministerial associations to promote their
programs that support C-c schools, and thereby receive community support.
- Corporate rules do not allow collective bargaining groups, and minimize employee
participation in C-c operations. Employee 1 yr. contracts depend on employee compliance.
- While there have been C-c schools exemplifying academic excellence, a nationwide study
demonstrates that they produce equivalent or lower scores results than the public schools.
NO GOVERNOR BEVIN, CORPORATE-chartered schools ARE NOT JUST LIKE PUBLIC SCHOOLS.
The only competition is with private investment interests. Parents are deceived, the reality is that they will have no real choice in school selection. Certainly they have no choice in the selection of Corporate Board Membership or its operations. Tax payers have no choice as to how their funds will be spent, no choice to protect students from a curriculum reflecting a Corporate Board ideology, or a socio-economic-scientific belief. dr. joe brennan