State-created charters sidestep public schools

Will state-created charter schools offer poor and minority students a way out of troubled neighborhood schools, as claimed by advocates of a proposed constitutional amendment that will appear on the November ballot?

Or is there a danger that such schools — created over the protest of local officials — will become de facto private schools, drawing a disproportionate share of their student body from wealthier, more influential families, leaving others on the outside looking in?

As it turns out, the state Department of Education maintains a demographic database of every public school in the state, including state-sanctioned charter schools. (The most recent year in which such data is available is the 2010-11 school year). And the data tell us a lot.

Let’s look at Pataula Charter Academy, which serves students in kindergarten through grade six in a five-county area in southwest Georgia. That’s a poor region — in Early County, 76 percent of students are eligible for a free or reduced lunch. In Randolph County, it’s 90 percent; in Calhoun, 92 percent; in Baker, 83 percent and in Clay County, it’s 92 percent.

The public school systems in those counties are also overwhelmingly black. In Calhoun County, where Pataula Charter is located, just 2 percent of the student body in the local school system is white. In Clay County, it’s a mere 1 percent.

Yet in Pataula Charter, 75 percent of the student body is white. Moreover, the percentage of the Pataula student body eligible for free or reduced lunches (54 percent) is well below the regional average. The state classifies Pataula and its other state-created charter schools as “special” schools, and in Pataula’s case at least, that seems accurate for unintentional reasons.

In other state-created charter schools, the demographic discrepancy between their student body and that of the area they serve is less startling but still significant. At the Charter Conservatory for Arts and Technology in Statesboro, just 9 percent of the student body is black, compared to 36 percent in the surrounding county. The percentage of CCAT students eligible for free or reduced meals is significantly lower as well.

Even the exceptions are interesting. Ivy Prep in Gwinnett County boasts a student body that is considerably more African American than other public schools in Gwinnett. However, the percentage of Ivy Prep students eligible for free or reduced meals is barely half the percentage of the Gwinnett district as a whole.

Given that parental income is a strong indicator of student performance, it’s no surprise that such schools sometimes outperform other public schools.

In the interest of fairness, such statistics reflect challenges with charter schools in general, not just those created by the state. In many places, particularly in rural Georgia, charters attract students who would otherwise attend private schools. Because charters can require parents to volunteer as a condition of attendance, they draw families in which parental involvement — and the workplace and transportation flexibility needed to be parentally involved — are a given.

You then create a system in which committed parents and prepared students gravitate toward charters, stripping other schools of the raw materials from which successful schools are made. That dynamic is an important reason to leave the authority to create charters with local officials who know their own communities, rather than with political appointees in Atlanta.

– Jay Bookman

356 comments Add your comment

Keep Up the Good Fight!

October 1st, 2012
7:14 am

Well this ought to be full of nonsensical posts today. The bottom line, even if the disparate impact is unintentional, it is unacceptable.

Keep Up the Good Fight!

October 1st, 2012
7:18 am

That dynamic is an important reason to leave the authority to create charters with local officials who know their own communities, rather than with political appointees in Atlanta.

Well said. Let’s keep it away from political appointees with agendas focused on talking points, politics and everything else but fixing education and doing what is best for the educational system.

Normal Free...Pro Human Rights Thug...And liking it!

October 1st, 2012
7:25 am

I don’t know where all of this is going, and while I would prefer that my Grand Kids and great grand Kids, have the same public school experiences I had, the bottom line here for me and my family is to ensure that they get the best education possible by whatever means. I would prefer good public schools with good teachers, but the kids come first.

Tom(Independent Viet Vet-USAF)

October 1st, 2012
7:33 am

To me the bottom line is parental choice, that should be given the highest priority, regardless of the facts you mentioned. Two of my adult children(both public school teachers, one HS, the other elementary) with children themselves, support the measure. Each different district in the state will have it’s own particular circumstances. This may sound foolish to you but some parents wish their children to excel while others just wish to get by. Parental choice means vote YES!!!!!!!!!!!!

Aquagirl

October 1st, 2012
7:33 am

When you hear a conservative claim they want State appointed charters for the sake of “poor children” step back. A lightning bolt might be imminent.

These people are lying and they darned well know it.

USMC

October 1st, 2012
7:35 am

It is SAD that Jay Bookman, predictably, never highlights or analyzes the epic failure that is our Atlanta Public Schools. I think he is afraid to admit what he might find. :-)

TaxPayer

October 1st, 2012
7:37 am

I have an idea. How about we let the state sanction private charter schools so long as they do not use any tax dollars at all.

Keep Up the Good Fight!

October 1st, 2012
7:37 am

Hmmm… looks like USMC does not know how to check the archives before he lies so early in the AM. What is it with the conned who somehow think that their lies cannot be fact checked.

Aquagirl

October 1st, 2012
7:48 am

How about we let the state sanction private charter schools so long as they do not use any tax dollars at all.

You know Tom’s freeloading offspring won’t go for that….they want other people’s tax dollars without their input. They love the idea of taxation without representation.

Diogenes

October 1st, 2012
7:51 am

My wife is a teacher in the public school system, and my daughter attends a charter school, so educational questions are raised pretty frequently in our household. Since charter schools have been around for some time, I have always wondered why the state , or outside academics, haven’t studied if the move to charter schools doesn’t indicate that a lot of the state’s regulations are burdensome and ineffective. For example, for years my wife has come home complaining that state imposed the teaching of materials that were not properly sequenced. The beginning of the 2012 school year was so confusing that my wife’ and her colleagues were told to teach what they taught last year until the situation was r cleared up . Oh, and one final vent. The Republicans have vowed to shrink state government, and because education is the largest item in the state budget, achieving that goal would entail making the residents of Georgia dumber and less economically competitive

Keep Up the Good Fight!

October 1st, 2012
7:52 am

How about we let the state sanction private charter schools so long as they do not use any tax dollars at all.

Isn’t that called a private school? OMG those have got to be unconstitutional, unlawful or something right? Why is the private sector not providing these?

It would be funny if it were not so sad.

AU Liberal in ATL

October 1st, 2012
7:53 am

You have to know that the situation cited in those counties probably reflect exactly what the supporters of the measure intend. I know, I know. They’re not racists, some of their best friends are black. Most states don’t seem capable of running the public education system. As important as education is to the country, it’s time for the federal government to nationalize the system. There is no valid reason that a kid who lives in Early County, GA cannot have access to the same public education as a kid who lives in Buffalo, NY. The importance of good teachers and good schools has not been realized by the radical right. If this isn’t corrected soon, all the negative issues we face as a country are sure to be enhanced.

Brosephus™

October 1st, 2012
7:54 am

If the whole parental involvement thing is one of the reasons that students at charters perform better than other students, then why not encourage more parental involvement in public schools? That would surely be more beneficial than the continuous belittling of public schools that is currently not producing any positive results.

GT

October 1st, 2012
7:56 am

The cheating scandals have left me wondering if the NCAA is checking these Atlanta ,and where ever else they find this stuff, for “changed grades” in athletes playing college football. The reason I say this is the one thing that will wake the Georgia school systems and state legislature up to the reality of our lack of attention to minority education is when a bus pulls up to the University of Georgia and starts hauling players off that have cheated to get in. Why if it is done in gross mass should it matter to the NCAA, you have student athletes all over the country coming out of our tainted system that are illegal. Far be it to worry about the minority child not getting an education the state paid for, not even sure the white kids in this state are too concern about the education, but don’t cut off the supply of minority players qualifying for division one play in this state.

I notice even in the religious private schools up till this year have had freakiest athletic success for the length of time they have existed and number of students. It wouldn’t be long before minorities started playing ball for these charter schools. The only use this cracker barrel of state legislators ever had for educating minority students. When the NCAA says you got to educate them or they can’t play ball you will see a stronger effort from this state to educate. It is like the Penn State awaking, they got hit where they lived so now clean it up and put things where they should be at least for this year. Only when it got so embarrassing that they couldn’t lie any more about it did the problem start being fixed.

Brosephus™

October 1st, 2012
7:56 am

For example, for years my wife has come home complaining that state imposed the teaching of materials that were not properly sequenced. The beginning of the 2012 school year was so confusing that my wife’ and her colleagues were told to teach what they taught last year until the situation was r cleared up .

That’s easy to remedy. Simply get politics and politicians out of education. That would probably be much better and produce more positive results than anything else that’s been suggested.

mad_russian

October 1st, 2012
7:57 am

Charter school = Private school funded with public money. If you want change in your local schools, get involved. Community involvement equates to positive change. If you do like the residents of the Grant Park’s charter school you’ll create yet another divide withing the community. As for USMC, it’s easy to place blame on a school system but as I stated earlier, get involved or get out.

jconservative

October 1st, 2012
8:02 am

I cannot see giving more authority to the central government.

TaxPayer

October 1st, 2012
8:02 am

This whole state sanctioning of local taxpayer dollars reeks of redistribution.

jd

October 1st, 2012
8:04 am

GOAL is another means of taking tax $$$ to fund private schools. $50 million in tax expenditures this year… expect the legislature to increase this form of education funding, while cutting public school funding even more.

bob

October 1st, 2012
8:05 am

Jay, instead of whining about people wanting to yank their kids out of bad schools why not address the problem. You have many of these poor kids that have one or two non working parents that send their kids off to be baby sat by gov. Many kids are preparred for the first day of school, mine included. My spouse and I both work yet find time to prepare our children by using various methods that cost little or nothing other than time. I feel bad for the poorest kids but the lefts idea is to hold all kids back in the name of equality. Not all poor parents are slackers but quit with the status quo of penalizing all for the sake of a few. You want to blame lack of money when lack of parenting skills is the issue. quit confusing the two.

Karl Marx

October 1st, 2012
8:07 am

Local control, now that is a misrepresented term in this debate. The people screaming “local control’ still what their hand out from the state. If you want “local control” pay for it “Locally” and give up your state allocation. If you’re not willing to do that you are NOT for local control.

Mary Elizabeth

October 1st, 2012
8:07 am

“In many places, particularly in rural Georgia, charters attract students who would otherwise attend private schools. . . .

You then create a system in which committed parents and prepared students gravitate toward charters, stripping other schools of the raw materials from which successful schools are made. That dynamic is an important reason to leave the authority to create charters with local officials who know their own communities, rather than with political appointees in Atlanta.”
========================================

Usually, the “committed parents and prepared students” come from backgrounds of more advantage than those who are not in either of those categories. As a result, charter schools, particularly state authorized charter schools, will foster a more hierarchial society than an egalitarian one. Is this the kind of Georgia to which we want to return? That type of culture was quite prevalent during the Antebellum days and the Jim Crow days of Georgia’s history. Public schools, in which all students are served equally well through public taxes, help to make for a more equitable society, as Jefferson well knew. Then, of course, there is the motivation for profit, or using school children to make profit, which some charter schools will foster. I will share – in my subsequent posts – the politically motivated, profit agenda in attempting to ultimately privatize traditional public schools for profit.

VOTE NO to the proposed constitutional amendment to legitimize a State Commission for Charter Schools. Charter schools which are authorized by local school districts would more likely work with their local school districts to improve education for ALL of Georgia’s children than would the politically motivated state authorized schools, which would serve mainly the interests of the few.

jd

October 1st, 2012
8:07 am

Brosephus — used to be that parents ran for school board to manage their local system. But, Ralph Reed and other GOP evangelists saw school boards as a farm system for future legislators — so politics became more important than education — now the same GOP wants to do away with these locally elected school boards (which they no longer need since they have the power)… thus keeping our children in the dark…

Cosby

October 1st, 2012
8:08 am

Lets play teh race card…but education all starts at home and parent responsibility. Of course the Federal Government that you so love, has made it a business to have kids…have one more and collect more money and we do not care who the daddy is…since Johnso’s Great Society the Federal Government supported by the NAACP have put the black race on a plantation unknown by my southern heritage and yet the black population seems to like it. Time for representatives as John Lewis, the NAACP and others to celan up their back yard and demand personal responsibility. As for charter Schools, it brings back parents into education and is a thorn in the side of the wonderful Teachers Union and Goone Government Officials who care nothing about the kids but about their power and money!

stands for decibels

October 1st, 2012
8:08 am

Will state-created charter schools offer poor and minority students a way out of troubled neighborhood schools, as claimed by advocates of a proposed constitutional amendment that will appear on the November ballot?

no.

bob

October 1st, 2012
8:08 am

mad-russian, charter schools are financed by tax money, not public money. If taxpayers get a product put out by the likes of Beverly Hall then taxpayers will find a better way.

Fed Up

October 1st, 2012
8:09 am

Charter schools require parental involvement, and the first step is for the parent to APPLY to the school. After that, all children have an equal chance of getting in, if there is a lottery. Instead of looking at the percentage of white/black/etc students, they should look at the percentages of APPLICANTS.

stands for decibels

October 1st, 2012
8:10 am

I cannot see giving more authority to the central government.

Oh, principles, schminciples…

stands for decibels

October 1st, 2012
8:12 am

mad-russian

Karl Marx was a Kraut, not a Russkie.

[insert joke about "that's what I'd expect from the product of ____ education" here.]

stands for decibels

October 1st, 2012
8:13 am

the lefts idea is to hold all kids back in the name of equality.

Straw man! Getcher straw man here!

bob

October 1st, 2012
8:14 am

jd, you can say that Ralph Reed and the like want to get rid of the local school boards but since many of these school boards can’t seem to educate shoulodn’t that be the case ? Isn’t that why we are discussing this, some schools are failing and people given the opportunity leave tend to do just that ? And notice the lack of tea party / repub involvement in the worst performing schools, who gets the blame for the dem/left systems shame ?

randy

October 1st, 2012
8:14 am

Good Fight – despite Ayn Rand’s irritating repetition of “Reality is Real”, what she really meant is “My Ideology Trumps Reality”. The modern conservative’s disdain for fact checking, actual data, and reality in general shows that they fully endorse the power of plausible-seeming ideology and the relentless promotion of false claims.

So point out USMC’s blatant lies all you want – he’ll never change his views. “Jay has never mentioned problems in the APS”. His ideology transcends the truth. He shares Karl Rove’s contempt for the “reality based community”. In fact, he’ll probably be just as smug as Jm about it – they just know Better than all you analytic fools.

politicdiscourse.com

October 1st, 2012
8:17 am

The argument for charter schools put forth by many is that parents should have an alternative to the failing public schools. Newsflash: private schools are a choice, and if a parent can’t afford a private school home schooling is another choice.

If a parents can’t afford private school, can’t afford to miss work to home school, and they can’t be a good enough parent to ensure their child’s success in public school, they can opt to not have children.

The options already exist. What people are really saying is that they want a better option for free.

Mary Elizabeth

October 1st, 2012
8:18 am

Rep. Jan Jones, a Republican in Georgia’s House of Representatives and a member of ALEC’s educational task force, sponsored the constitutional amendment resolution, HR 1162, in Georgia legislature. Yesterday morning, Bill Moyers broadcast a further expose on ALEC’s tentacles into state legislatures, in which ALEC’s agenda of the privatization of public institutions is primary, including public schools.

I urge every reader to take the time to view the video in the link below, which gives Moyer’s broadcast, through which he exposes further ALEC’s secretive methods of fulfilling their agenda of incorporating corporate interests, which are profit based interests, into public education.

http://www.rawstory.com/rs/2012/09/28/bill-moyers-alec-is-still-everywhere

GT

October 1st, 2012
8:21 am

jconservative where have you been successful in this part of the country with state rights. You guys act like your plans work, like you have a clue of what you got here and whose fault it is. Lord if you saw people going into a building and only those people getting sick you might surmise there is something inside that building making them sick. Same with the state of Georgia, we are one of the most impoverished, uneducated, and I am talking the whole state not just the minority, yet we think we have the answers. It is almost too comical, yet it is ruining lives and people think they are dying of one disease because they are too thick headed to realize it is another that is killing them.

ByteMe - Thugs vs. Ilk... in 3D!

October 1st, 2012
8:22 am

You know that the amendment is bad when the question is misleading:

“Shall the Constitution of Georgia be amended to allow state or local approval of public charter schools upon the request of local communities?”

Two problems here:

* local approval is already in the constitution, so that’s a blatant red herring tossed into the text to make the average low-information voter think that these things would be illegal if you don’t vote for it.

* What are “local communities”? Are they businessmen from Indiana with a local attorney? Are they a majority of the community or one person?

Tom(Independent Viet Vet-USAF)

October 1st, 2012
8:23 am

Aquagirl@7:48 – “Freeloading”, nice. Actually my grandchildren go to public schools and enjoy it. But their parents believe that if a charter school issue comes up, it should be their choice as parents to make, not some local school district. If I understand this correctly, the tax dollars we pay would follow the children from public to charter -public schools. I, as you also, have paid this tax for over 45 years. Aquagirl, you almost sound like a Conservative with your comment! As far as the education system goes, you can lead a horse to water but you can not make him drink. Some children do the best they can but are just over-matched when it comes to academic success. Kinda like the replacement refs, in over their head. Most parents can not afford the private school rates but public charter schools could be an affordable option. Just a thought to consider. There is no right or wrong on this issue but I go with PARENTAL CHOICE!!!!!!!!!!!!

Mary Elizabeth

October 1st, 2012
8:25 am

I also urge the reading audience to read the article by Diane Ravitch, entitled, “What you need to know about ALEC,” published May 3, 2012, in “Bridging Differences” from “Education Week.” Diane Ravitch is Research Professor of Education at New York University. Link for the article is below.

Here is a paragraph from that article:

“This outburst of anti-public school, anti-teacher legislation is no accident. It is the work of a shadowy group called the American Legislative Exchange Council, or ALEC. Founded in 1973, ALEC is an organization of nearly 2,000 conservative state legislators. Its hallmark is promotion of privatization and corporate interests in every sphere, not only education, but healthcare, the environment, the economy, voting laws, public safety, etc.”

The article asks the question: “Who is on the education task force of ALEC?” Then, the article gives readers the link to find out the answer. From Georgia, the article lists the following members of Georgia’s legislature as members of ALEC’s education task force, as of July, 2011:

Rep. David Casas

Rep. Jan Jones

Rep. Mike Dudgeon

Rep. Howard Maxwell

Sen. Fran Millar

Sen. Greg Goggans

http://www.alternet.org/story/155257/what_you_need_to_know_about_alec

Granny Godzilla - Union Thugette

October 1st, 2012
8:25 am

“since Johnso’s Great Society the Federal Government supported by the NAACP have put the black race on a plantation unknown by my southern heritage and yet the black population seems to like it.”

shorter Cosby…”oink, oink,oink”

stands for decibels

October 1st, 2012
8:26 am

You know that the amendment is bad when the question is misleading

I’ve yet to read any referendum question that WASN’T at least somewhat BS, myself.

My MO when in the voting booth is, if I haven’t researched the ballot measure first, I ain’t voting up or down, period. I suspect however that in the case of this one, most Georgia voters will see the magic words “charter skoolz” and say “I’m for it”.

weetamoe

October 1st, 2012
8:27 am

In the comments on the get schooled blog in the ajc today, a charter school opponent used the reductio ad Hitlerum argument. Sort of an echo of the placards carried by protesting teachers in Wisconsin comparing themselves to holocaust victims. That solipsism and stupidity coupled with the well-documented widespread cheating should be sufficient to warn parents away from public schools.

Mary Elizabeth

October 1st, 2012
8:28 am

20 of Georgia’s state senators are members of ALEC, including Senate Majority Leader Chip Rogers.
38 of Georgia’s state representatives are members of ALEC, including Rep. Jan Jones, the sponsor of the constitutional amendment bill.

The link, below, names all of Georgia’s legislators who are members of ALEC.

http://www.sourcewatch.org/index.php/Georgia_ALEC_Politicians

stands for decibels

October 1st, 2012
8:29 am

In the comments on the get schooled blog in the ajc today, a charter school opponent used the reductio ad Hitlerum argument. Sort of an echo of the placards carried by protesting teachers in Wisconsin comparing themselves to holocaust victims.

nominated for “Furthest Traveled.” any seconds?

Fly-On-The-Wall

October 1st, 2012
8:29 am

As everyone says – just follow the money. There you’ll find our corrupt Republican politicans who now ‘guide’ our state. Vote the bums out in November.

Tom(Independent Viet Vet-USAF)

October 1st, 2012
8:30 am

Fed Up@8:09 – Excellent comment, agree 100%!

indigo

October 1st, 2012
8:31 am

Enter your comments here

Marty Huggins'

October 1st, 2012
8:31 am

Well with how well some of the state schools are doing, I don’t know why there would even be a need for Charter schools?

I mean the states have shown themselves to be solo good at spending tax payer money to produce such amazing results.

What are the GA schools system ranked now, 2nd or 3rd in the nation.

Why mess with a good thing keep the status quo.

I mean look how well the counties Jay mentioned are doing….. especially science!!

MiltonMan

October 1st, 2012
8:33 am

I wonder if the residents of DeKalb & Clayton would be interested in charter schools or do they wish to continue legalized parental abuse by sending their kids to the dumps known as public schools in their county???

Citizen of the World

October 1st, 2012
8:35 am

Just one more example of the systematic shortening of the stick for children who are already getting the short end of the stick.

One of the more interesting points made in the book Freakonomics, to me, was about the imbalance of power that comes when one side possesses knowledge that the other lacks — knowledge is power, nothing new there — but anyway, how can we ever expect poor people to improve their lot when they are not given equal opportunity to learn and know? Too many are hampered by poverty and ignorance in their home lives and school could be a way out for them, but not if it’s as sorry as their upbringing.

bob

October 1st, 2012
8:36 am

Prior to our society becoming great by LBJ, we had many poor people. Those times were differant and many of the poor did not accept flunking out of school or getting knocked up. Now we have our great society and flunking out of school and getting knocked up are a good part of the culture in the counties listed by Jay. Whether you want to admit it or not, many of the poor are lazy slackers that can’t make time to pull out a deck of flashcards to help their own kids, don’t expect people that do take the time to let their kids get dragged down. And many of you think the smart ones owe it to the rest, they do not !

barking frog

October 1st, 2012
8:36 am

Compulsory education
exists because many parents
do not care. Local good old
boys do not always make
decisions in the best interests of the children.
Anything tried can be
changed.

Fred ™

October 1st, 2012
8:37 am

This is just another way for MOOCHING REPUBLICANS to steal my tax money to pay for their child’s private school.

DO LIKE I DO AND PAY FOR YOUR OWN PRIVATE SCHOOL YOU MOOCHING REPUBLICANS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

indigo

October 1st, 2012
8:38 am

Our Georgia politician’s past history indicates that their stated reasons for wanting charter schools are almost certainly lies and do not in any way show the real agenda.

Fly-On-The-Wall

October 1st, 2012
8:38 am

Seconded and so passed.

b-troll

October 1st, 2012
8:39 am

“You then create a system in which committed parents and prepared students gravitate toward charters, stripping other schools of the raw materials from which successful schools are made. That dynamic is an important reason to leave the authority to create charters with local officials who know their own communities, rather than with political appointees in Atlanta.”

You also then create a system in which committed parents and prepared students gravitate toward charters, engaging wealthier and more educated parents into the schools systems in a manner that also helps poorer students. That dynamic is an important reason to grant the authority to create charters with state officials when local officials refuse to do so.

stands for decibels

October 1st, 2012
8:39 am

I wonder if the residents of DeKalb & Clayton would be interested in charter schools or do they wish to continue legalized parental abuse by sending their kids to the dumps known as public schools in their county?

False dichotomies! Step right up, getcher false dichotomies here!

MiltonMan

October 1st, 2012
8:40 am

“Whether you want to admit it or not, many of the poor are lazy slackers that can’t make time to pull out a deck of flashcards to help their own kids, don’t expect people that do take the time to let their kids get dragged down. And many of you think the smart ones owe it to the rest, they do not !”

I used to (emphasize used to) mentor in schools in downtown Atlanta in the late 90s. There were often times that there would be no parent in the school and the few times I had a child show up it was because they were sent to me from detention or wanted to talk about the latest TV show or video game.

Fred ™

October 1st, 2012
8:40 am

Fed Up

October 1st, 2012
8:09 am

Charter schools require parental involvement, and the first step is for the parent to APPLY to the school. After that, all children have an equal chance of getting in, if there is a lottery. Instead of looking at the percentage of white/black/etc students, they should look at the percentages of APPLICANTS.
++++++++++++++++++++

Uh huh. And who picks them?

GT

October 1st, 2012
8:41 am

ALEC reminds me of those parking lot meetings after the real meeting I see so often. The participates have not got the guts, or the right logic, to bring their thoughts to the called meetings but sound like men of action in the shadows of that parking lot. The right have been clever to find the weak links of our country, the local governments and there like terrorist they train their brainwashed followers that have been cheated by the rest of the nation by no fault of their own, in their brainwashed minds. It is a power play fueled by fools very similar to the suicide bombers. You never see the organizers being the victims of the bomb, they are above all that. So you have the Newts running underground markets that bring him millions for doing what?

Aquagirl

October 1st, 2012
8:41 am

Aquagirl@7:48 – “Freeloading”, nice. Actually my grandchildren go to public schools and enjoy it. But their parents believe that if a charter school issue comes up, it should be their choice as parents to make, not some local school district.

Tom, if you don’t want your children referred to as freeloaders, don’t post their opinions secondhand and then run and hide behind their skirts.

Second, that “local school district” is run by an elected board because it disburses taxes collected from EVERYONE. If your children like my money, they have to live with my opinion. If they want to take my money and leave me no say in how it’s spent, they are freeloaders and they can keep their damn hands out of my wallet. If they don’t have enough money for a private school then they get what EVERYONE agrees on. This is not a tough concept, and watching people like you try to squirm around it is highly amusing.

I sound like a Republican? God, that is an insult since I consider many Republicans to be utter hypocrites like yourself, advocating smaller government and lower taxes unless they can raid somebody else’s pocket and do whatever they please with the haul.

If you or your children don’t like the local school district you can move. Acting like spoiled brats who want to take ALL the toys and go home is un-Republican, un-American, and selfish, greedy behavior.

Sorry you don’t like to admit that, most people don’t like being called out on their behavior and blather bumper-sticker nonsense as a reply. Truth hurts.

straitroad

October 1st, 2012
8:41 am

Jay, I agree with you on this topic, although for different reasons. I don’t advocate using tax dollars to fund what is essentially a private school. Local school boards should oversee any school receiving tax dollars. Yes, many public schools need to be reformed but if parents want an alternative to their public school, they should look to private schools, not publically funded “private schools”. Kids will only perform according to the expectations set forth by their parents. The problem today isn’t the school or the teachers, but lies with parents who are either absent or apathetic.

MiltonMan

October 1st, 2012
8:41 am

“I wonder if the residents of DeKalb & Clayton would be interested in charter schools or do they wish to continue legalized parental abuse by sending their kids to the dumps known as public schools in their county?

False dichotomies! Step right up, getcher false dichotomies here!”

Yes – my bad. The schools in those two dumps of counties are doing just wonderfully; just ignore the fact that SACS is hot on their heels – again.

Mary Elizabeth

October 1st, 2012
8:42 am

I want to share with this blog’s reading audience’s this following link for learning more about ALEC’s influence in transforming public education to a model in which public tax dollars will be used for private industry profit opportunists: http://www.alecexposed.com/wiki/ALEC_Exposed

I urge readers to hit that link, go halfway down the page, and view the 4 minute (4:37) video there, entitled, “What price tag is ALEC putting on your kids?”

Below is a description of that video, which is under the title. That video highlights how virtual, online education is making profit from taking public school funds which might have gone to brick and mortar schools, as one example – among others – of various “school choice” options that are being used to dismantle traditional public education.

“ALEC is working to ensure that public education dollars get diverted to private for-profit corporations such as K-12, Inc. Their approach is working — for them. Not so much for the students who pay the price in the form of a subpar education and poor performance.”

MiltonMan

October 1st, 2012
8:43 am

“The problem today isn’t the school or the teachers, but lies with parents who are either absent or apathetic.”

The APS cheating scandal is parent-driven??? Interesting. I did not know that.

Fred ™

October 1st, 2012
8:43 am

On this blog we will get to witness the hypocrisy of the REPUBLICAN MOOCHERS who want to steal our tax money to pay for their private schools.

They are out in droves already……

straitroad

October 1st, 2012
8:44 am

Milton, sarcasm helps nothing. Sure, in a way the cheating scandal is partially the fault of the parents. The administration of the APS isn’t being held accountable by the parents.

Jay

October 1st, 2012
8:45 am

““I wonder if the residents of DeKalb & Clayton would be interested in charter schools or do they wish to continue legalized parental abuse by sending their kids to the dumps known as public schools in their county?

DeKalb and Clayton both offer LOCALLY created charter schools, so using them to bolster the claim that state-created charters are necessary is silly.

Fred ™

October 1st, 2012
8:46 am

There is no right or wrong on this issue but I go with PARENTAL CHOICE!!!!!!!!!!!!

Yeah, as long as you can MOOCH MY MONEY you do………

JamVet

October 1st, 2012
8:48 am

When I first moved here in 1979, it was so overpowering that it was almost palpable.

Irrational, hyper-parochialism between the metro counties.

Based primarily on………………………….. race.

What is it with you southerners?

I cross the river into Cobb from Fulton or vice versa, or from some arbitrary line from one metro county into the other and all of the ills that afflict one magically disappear for the other?

No wonder you lost the war. You can’t even stand each other….

Mary Elizabeth

October 1st, 2012
8:48 am

Charters are public schools although some are managed by private sector corporations. Some political analysts believe that the emphasis on authorizing state charter schools is a first step toward moving toward vouchers. Vouchers allow for the possibility that public tax money (meant for public, not private schools) could be used to support private schools, in which many operate for profit.

I do not support vouchers because their use would probably make even more prevalent – than in public charter schools – the use of school children for the profit purposes of profiteers seeking a perceived “educational industry” to tap into. Using the education of children for the profit purposes of profiteers would fundamentally change education as we have known it, which has been to serve the common good of all students and families, equally, through public taxes.

kayaker 71

October 1st, 2012
8:48 am

I wonder if the charter school teachers will “assist” the students in taking their exams?

Just Saying..

October 1st, 2012
8:48 am

Demographic data on Jay’s and Kyle’s posters might be as revealing…

jbrown

October 1st, 2012
8:49 am

Once again an article is written that is difficult to distinguish between editorial comment and legitimate reporting. The facts are fired against readers like bullets in a fire fight. I have no doubt that the statistics are dead accurate but because they are incomplete they leave the reader to conclude there is some conspiracy here; whites against blacks, rich against poor or perhaps it is about power and who should have it. For example there is no mention of the breakdown of family structure. Are the children in charter and private schools more likely to have two parents or are these single parent households? Charter schools, while obviously not a silver bullet, attempt to address the root problem in education; parental envolvement. At the end of the day it isn’t really about white or black, rich or poor. It is about empowering parents to do better for their children and whether government really has a role. Let’s not forget the other key characteristic that is missing; accountability.

TaxPayer

October 1st, 2012
8:51 am

Fred ™

October 1st, 2012
8:51 am

Just Saying..

October 1st, 2012
8:48 am

Demographic data on Jay’s and Kyle’s posters might be as revealing…
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
Yeah it would. It would reveal how much knuckle dragging, hairy backed, sheet wearing, trailer trash hangs out at Kyle’s………..

N-GA

October 1st, 2012
8:51 am

First, define the problem. Then seek a solution. If the problem is the teachers, fix it! If the problem is the curriculum, fix it! Charter schools are an ill-disguised effort to ignore the problem in the false hope that it will just go away.

Don't Tread

October 1st, 2012
8:51 am

I’m voting for the amendment. The status quo is unacceptable.

Fred ™

October 1st, 2012
8:53 am

jbrown

October 1st, 2012
8:49 am

Once again an article is written that is difficult to distinguish between editorial comment and legitimate reporting.
++++++++++++++++++++++

Since you are simple there Skippy, let me simply explain this to you.

THIS IS AN OPINION BLOG

If you are too dense to know what that means ask Rush or Neal to explain it to you.

MiltonMan

October 1st, 2012
8:54 am

“I cross the river into Cobb from Fulton or vice versa, or from some arbitrary line from one metro county into the other and all of the ills that afflict one magically disappear for the other?”

Plenty of crappy schools in Cobb – Osbourne, Campbell, South Cobb, etc., etc.

kayaker 71

October 1st, 2012
8:54 am

Fred, 8:51,

Fred must have been turned down last night. Somebody have a headache, Fred?

MiltonMan

October 1st, 2012
8:55 am

“First, define the problem. Then seek a solution. If the problem is the teachers, fix it! If the problem is the curriculum, fix it! Charter schools are an ill-disguised effort to ignore the problem in the false hope that it will just go away.”

yes the libs try this all the time without much success – spend more money on the problem until it does away.

Poor Boy from Alabama

October 1st, 2012
8:56 am

JB,

With all due respect, you’re doing your readers a disservice when you try to make the case that charter schools have a less diverse student body than public schools.

The GA Dept. of Education’s own report (Chartering in Georgia, 2010 – 2011) shows that charter schools in GA have higher percentages of Black students and essentially equal percentages of Latino students as do public schools.

See Figure 3, Page 8:

The percentage of students in GA charters who are not eligible for free or reduced priced lunches was 50.5% vs. 42.6% for all public students in GA.

See Figure 4, page 9

http://archives.gadoe.org/DMGetDocument.aspx/2010%202011%20Charter%20School%20Annual%20Report%20for%20Webposting%20Feb%2013.pdf?p=6CC6799F8C1371F63D9AED7D43D1CDA5FDDD168F996C546A7AC76D1CC23F574D&Type=D

Figures from the National Center for Education Statistics (US Dept of Education) also show highly diverse charter school enrollments over many years:

http://nces.ed.gov/programs/coe/tables/table-cse-1.asp

Implying that charters are a ruse for elitist, less diverse schools just doesn’t hold water. Make a different argument if you don’t like charter schools.

Jefferson

October 1st, 2012
8:56 am

Zell’s pandering for votes created the cost/performance problem we have. The GOP’s greedy ways continue the problem.

TaxPayer

October 1st, 2012
8:58 am

If charter schools are the solution to all that ails education, then it should be easy to convince your local school board to build those charter schools. They have the power to do it. Present the facts to them and see what happens. There are a lot of charter schools in Georgia so some people must have been able to make their case. What’s wrong with the reast of you? Poor debating skills perhaps.

Welcome to the Occupation

October 1st, 2012
8:58 am

Neoliberalism, the disease that is destroying our civilization as we speak, absolutely loves charter schools because it is yet another way to dismantle state sponsored education and weaken the state generally in favor of private interests. The charter school movement is a way to funnel resources away from the most disadvantaged to those who already have most of the advantages anyway. It’s exhibit A in how our politics are utterly corrupted and eaten from the inside out with cynical calculation.

And guess what: it’s perfectly BIPARTISAN.

0311/8541/5811/1811/1801

October 1st, 2012
8:59 am

Maybe it will helpe prevent headlines like these !!!!

“Atlanta school cheating cases far from done”

“Cheating scandal has cost $1.7 million in one year”

Redneck Convert (R--and proud of it)

October 1st, 2012
8:59 am

Well, charter schools may help improve the edumacation of students because our kids won’t have to be in the same class with a bunch of Those People they give parents choices. I want little Nathan Zell George to be learning good when he starts 1st grade.

Anyhow, it’s real wet out here and I wish all of you were out here with me. Have a good Monday everybody.

j nes

October 1st, 2012
9:00 am

If the ballot measure was simply worded, “Shall the Constitution of Georgia be amended to allow state or local approval of racially segregated schools upon the request of local communities?” would it pass in Georgia?

Considering citizens do not have to own up to their votes, I wouldn’t be surprised.

Joseph

October 1st, 2012
9:00 am

Jay:
I figured I would re-post this from a few weeks ago since you never bothered to reply… Again I ask. How the hell can you sit from your comfortable perch in AJCville and even begin to contemplate how pathetic the school systems in these areas are? Yes I do know cherry picking and it ain’t happening. If it is you certainly have no proof. My proof is that hardly any child has been left out that’s joined the lottery. As you know students are drawn from a lottery and that’s obviously fair. Not cherry picking! Of course to a lib it’s confusing.
And yes I would say the overwhelming majority of parents do care that send their kids to PCA. The sad thing is in the liberal mindset all kids no matter their behavioral problems or academic problems should be thrown in together. Many parents whose kids attend public school don’t work and are on welfare and still won’t volunteer time. That’s pathetic!
Jay: I’ll also note that PCA requires a behavioral contract of its student’s.
Truth: At no time in the three years PCA has been in operation has a child been expelled. The faculty and staff always work out the problem unlike public schools where they do nothing but let the problem continue. So your theory there is debunked.
Jay: In addition, it has already been documented that much of the student body at PCA is drawn not from public schools in the area, but from two almost-exclusively white private academies. Do you even know the name of these private academies?
Truth: This is simply not true. Again how can you sit from your perch and know this.. That’s a lie. Plain and simple…
Jay:In other words, it is not educating students who used to be in standard public schools. Just as detractors of charter schools fear, it has in large part become a taxpayer-funded private school.
Truth:If you feel this is true. So be it. Get ready for it because it is the change we can believe in!
Jay: PCA is located in Calhoun County. In Calhoun County public schools, 94 percent of the students are black, 2 percent are white and 92 percent are eligible for free or reduced-price meals because their parents are so poor.
Truth: PCA serve’s Randolph, Calhoun, Clay, Early, and Baker. Add it all up if you’re gonna play the race card.
Jay: Finally, we should note that the test scores that Joseph cites are from the 2010-11 school year, the first year in which PCA was in existence. In other words, those scores were recorded by students who got almost all of their education somewhere other than PCA, and who brought those high marks with them when they enrolled.
Truth: A complete lie. PCA has been in existence for three years and test scores have increased dramatically for almost every student no matter what school they came from…
Jay: At PCA, 21 percent of the students are black, 75 percent are white and 54 percent are eligible for free or reduced-price meals. So 54% of the students receive free or reduced lunch.
Truth: I thought all these kids came from private schools? How that possible?

Listen you fruit. If you ever want to take a tour of some of these rural school systems you let me know. Because you would need someone like me to escort you.
And yes Jay. Test scores do matter!
But I ask another question. Should these kids just be thrown back into failing public school? What’s your answer Jay?

TaxPayer

October 1st, 2012
9:00 am

I believe Po Boy has proven the case that our existing system for creating and funding charter schools works just fine.

0311/8541/5811/1811/1801

October 1st, 2012
9:01 am

Maybe MARTA could run the Charter Schools ?

kayaker 71

October 1st, 2012
9:01 am

Poor Boy from Alabama,
8:56,

Bookman seems to have left out or ignored a few things. Does that surprise you?

Finn McCool (The System isn't Broken; It's Fixed)

October 1st, 2012
9:03 am

Hey Cons, you folks want to discuss the voter registration fraud thing you got going on?

Welcome to the Occupation

October 1st, 2012
9:03 am

N-GA: “First, define the problem. Then seek a solution”

That would only work though if there were a genuine desire to address and work through real problems. But on closer inspection, it’s clear that this is simply not the case. What the pro-charter movement wants is not to solve problems but to shut down the effort to address them in any meaningful collective way in favor of a short-circuit, a washing of hands of the problem by pretending cynically that charters/privatization is a silver bullet. In fact, there’s no interest at all in solving problems other than that of setting up with public funds schools by the privileged and for the privileged.

catlady

October 1st, 2012
9:04 am

I really thought your Sunday opinion piece, from which this was taken, was terrific, Jay. It points out many of the falacies that charter folks love to spou–that charters draw the same students, have the same demographics, mostly serve poor and minority kids, etc.

It is past high time that the liars are exposed for what they are, and that those poised to profit from these canned, out of state companies, are exposed for what they are as well, no matter WHERE in Georgia’s government they hide!

Marty Huggins'

October 1st, 2012
9:04 am

Fred ™
October 1st, 2012
8:46 am

I send my kids to private school and would continue to do so regardless of this amendment.

But do you think the education system in its current form is working?

For me as a society I think we need well educated citizens for us all to prosper more.

Look at the test scores in the counties from Jays piece.
Why do you not have a problem with those working at those schools who are mooching off of you?

Me personally I have to pay the taxes as is anyway.
I would at least want the money going to a school that is capable of passing all of it test. Notice not excelling but 50% is embarrassing.

JKL2

October 1st, 2012
9:05 am

aquagirl- If they want to take my money and leave me no say in how it’s spent, they are freeloaders and they can keep their damn hands out of my wallet.

obama says,”What?” (laughing all the way to the bank)

Pay your fair share. Why are you against educating children?

TaxPayer

October 1st, 2012
9:05 am

Listen you fruit. If you ever want to take a tour of some of these rural school systems you let me know. Because you would need someone like me to escort you.

Joseph has touched on his real reason for supporting state sanctioned use of local money to fund charter schools versus the current system.

Joseph

October 1st, 2012
9:05 am

You have stirred the pot Jaybird… Get ready!!!!

Tom(Independent Viet Vet-USAF)

October 1st, 2012
9:06 am

Fred – Did you really say MOOCHERS at least twice? Another lib poster said he did not like redistribution. It should be a fun day. Off to get coffee and read my lib AJC paper, later dudes. Mostly the sports section though!