Join the Meeting Place for Moms!
Talk to other moms, share advice, and have fun!

(minimum 6 characters)

Elementary School Kids Elementary School Kids

Scary reading in charter school bill - PIOG. RIDICULOUS new laws proposed.

Posted by on Mar. 29, 2013 at 9:22 AM
  • 23 Replies
Scary reading in charter school bill
By Valerie Strauss, Published: MARCH 28, 12:30 PM ET
Aa


A bill in the North Carolina Senate is highly revealing about how much concern its Republican sponsors really have for accountability in education.
Short answer: apparently none.

Longer answer: A bill titled “NC Public Charter School Board,” introduced by two Republicans, calls for a new board to approve and oversee charters. The State Board of Education would no longer have the job of overseeing charter schools, and charter school applicants would no longer have to get permission to open from local school boards or local education agencies. They could go straight to the new board, whose members would be appointed by the governor.

If anyone is worried that members of the new board might have conflicts of interest with the schools they are overseeing, the bill’s sponsors, Sen. Jerry Tillman and Sen. Dan Soucek, are not; their legislation doesn’t have any language ensuring that there are no conflicts.

What’s more, local school boards would be forced to lease open buildings or land to charter school operators for $1 annually unless they could prove that wasn’t feasible, according to the Progressive Pulse. If a charter school closes, its assets won’t go the local school agency or school board but to the state’s general fund.

And there’s more. The Pulse reports that the legislation says:

Charter schools shall "make efforts to reasonably reflect" the racial and ethnic composition of the LEA in which they are located.

That actually weakens the current requirement on diversity and reveals a lack of interest in such issues.

And there’s this: Charter schools would no longer have to have at least half of their teachers officially certified to teach, nor would they be legally required to conduct criminal background checks on their teachers and other staff members. Why? Well, during a legislative committee hearing on the bill, this is what happened, the Pulse reported:

Senators [Republican Austin] Allran and [Democrat Gladys] Robinson raised concerns about why the bill would make it optional for charter schools to conduct criminal background checks for prospective employees. "You're talking about children. Seems like something that would be the minimum you would do," said Allran. Tillman dismissed his concerns, effectively saying that he didn't want to micromanage the schools and that many would do the background checks anyway.

The bypassing of local school boards is not unique to North Carolina; Tennessee has a bill to do the same thing and, in fact, more than half of the states with charter-school laws allow state bodies to overrule charter decisions by other authorizers, according to the National Council of State Legislatures.

The North Carolina legislation may, however, be in a class by itself when it comes to removing any notion of accountability from charter schools.

Posted on the NEW CafeMom Mobile
by on Mar. 29, 2013 at 9:22 AM
Add your quick reply below:
You must be a member to reply to this post.
Replies (1-10):
Kris_PBG
by on Mar. 29, 2013 at 9:23 AM
2 moms liked this
This part is INSANE!!!

"Charter schools would no longer have to have at least half of their teachers officially certified to teach, nor would they be legally required to conduct criminal background checks on their teachers and other staff members. "

Posted on the NEW CafeMom Mobile
disneymom2two
by Silver Member on Mar. 29, 2013 at 9:34 AM

"Charter schools would no longer have to have at least half of their teachers officially certified to teach, nor would they be legally required to conduct criminal background checks on their teachers and other staff members. "

Wow!  I cannot imagine having no criminial checks conducted in a school or the possibility of having an entire school full of teachers not actually certified.  I would not send my child there.

AutymsMommy
by Silver Member on Mar. 29, 2013 at 9:37 AM

embarrassed

I am a Home Schooling, Vaccinating, Non spanking, Nightmare Cuddling, Dessert Giving, Bedtime Kissing, Book Reading, Stay at Home Mom. I believe in the benefit of organized after school activities and nosy, involved parents. I believe in spoiling my children. I believe that I have seen the village and I do not want it anywhere near my children. Now for the controversial stuff: we have traditional gender roles, we're Catholic, I'm Libertarian, he's Republican, we're both conservative, and we own guns (now there's no need to ask, lol).             Aimee














Kris_PBG
by on Mar. 29, 2013 at 9:38 AM
Exactly!!!! Who would???

No thanks - I'll send my kids to their great public school with teachers who not only have background checks, but are all certified and meet the requirements to be "highly qualified".

This push for charter schools explosion is just sick. Articles like this offer proof. :(


Quoting disneymom2two:

"Charter schools would no longer have to have at least half of their teachers officially certified to teach, nor would they be legally required to conduct criminal background checks on their teachers and other staff members. "

Wow!  I cannot imagine having no criminial checks conducted in a school or the possibility of having an entire school full of teachers not actually certified.  I would not send my child there.


Posted on the NEW CafeMom Mobile
honeydewmommy
by on Mar. 29, 2013 at 9:41 AM

OMG doesn't surprise me. Sounds like something NC would do, I am from there. And I remember our public schools were HORRIBLE now look what they are doing to the charter schools. LIke thats gonna help those kids. 

Here in TX we lost pretty much lost all Gov. Funding for public schools, I enrolled my son in private again this year. 

maxswolfsuit
by Max on Mar. 29, 2013 at 10:40 AM
2 moms liked this

The thing is, in a perfect world charters would police themselves. Parents should be researching school and involved enough to know what's going on. So poorly run charters shouldn't have a big enough enrollment to stay open. 

But unfortunately that's not how it works. So many people have such a deep routed disdain for the public school system they think any alternative is an improvement. So many crappy charters stay open even though their public school competitors offer a better education. 

So as much as the bill bothers me, I think the bigger issue is that parents would send their child to a school that didn't have certified teachers or require background checks. 

kameka
by on Mar. 29, 2013 at 10:45 AM
1 mom liked this
We looked into a new charter school for my oldest for next year. As soon as we looked beyond the surface we immediately changed course and are staying far away from charter schools.
Posted on the NEW CafeMom Mobile
GwenMB
by Gwen on Mar. 29, 2013 at 10:46 AM

I wonder what the other side of the story is.  This article sounds very biased.

I do agree with Max, though, that parents should be researching schools & be involved enough to know what's going on.  If all parents did that, and acted upon their info, we wouldn't have nearly as many bad schools.  I realize this isn't easy for all parents, I'm talking about what would happen in an ideal world.

Kris_PBG
by on Mar. 29, 2013 at 10:46 AM
I totally agree.

The reality is, many parents simply assume those type of things are "standard" and won't look into them - assuming all is well and good. Then those people DO send their kids there and the school keeps their doors open longer than it should.

I know at our school, we get quite a few kids every year back who left the charters to return to public school. These kids are known to typically be behind academically when they come in. What is also alarming is these kids come with their reading assessments done incorrectly, placed on reading levels they have no business in, etc... So the parents have no clue just how behind their kids really are...

But so many assume "new" = "better" and don't do their hw. :(


Quoting maxswolfsuit:

The thing is, in a perfect world charters would police themselves. Parents should be researching school and involved enough to know what's going on. So poorly run charters shouldn't have a big enough enrollment to stay open. 

But unfortunately that's not how it works. So many people have such a deep routed disdain for the public school system they think any alternative is an improvement. So many crappy charters stay open even though their public school competitors offer a better education. 

So as much as the bill bothers me, I think the bigger issue is that parents would send their child to a school that didn't have certified teachers or require background checks. 


Posted on the NEW CafeMom Mobile
Kris_PBG
by on Mar. 29, 2013 at 10:50 AM
I'm not sure there really "is" another side. It is a response to open proposed legislation.

Personally, I don't see how any politician can look someone in the eye and say, yes, possible increased corruption, no background checks and reducing the amount of certified teachers teaching is good for ANY child.

Sadly, I've been closely following charter legislation for years... The trend in legislation is for TONS more charter schools, easing rules and the process to open them, reduced accountability, reduced standards, etc... Bc it is about getting public education money into private hands - not education reform.


Quoting GwenMB:

I wonder what the other side of the story is.  This article sounds very biased.

I do agree with Max, though, that parents should be researching schools & be involved enough to know what's going on.  If all parents did that, and acted upon their info, we wouldn't have nearly as many bad schools.  I realize this isn't easy for all parents, I'm talking about what would happen in an ideal world.


Posted on the NEW CafeMom Mobile
Add your quick reply below:
You must be a member to reply to this post.
Join the Meeting Place for Moms!
Talk to other moms, share advice, and have fun!

(minimum 6 characters)