John Barge removes primer on charter schools from state website

This comes from the Associated Press:

A spokesman for state Superintendent John Barge says his boss has reached an agreement with Attorney General Sam Olens on the school chief’s political activity regarding a statewide referendum on charter schools.

Matt Cardoza says Barge remains opposed to a constitutional amendment that would allow the state to issue charters for private operators to run taxpayer financed schools. But Cardoza confirmed that the Department of Education has removed from its website a written primer on the issue.

The action comes after a private attorney filed a complaint accusing Barge of violating state law that generally limits the use of public resources for political activity.

Barge’s Q&A does not explicitly tell Georgians how to vote, but makes his position clear.

Cardoza says Barge will continue to speak candidly about his opposition.

“Reached an agreement” may not be the exactly right phrase. Lauren Kane, a spokeswoman for Olens, sent the following note in response to an inquiry:

The Attorney General has not ordered or directed Superintendent Barge to do anything. At the Superintendent’s request, we have offered verbal legal advice regarding potential litigation, and we continue to advise them on that matter. Because the matter is active and litigation is possible, we will have no further comment at this time.

Regardless, look for the material that had been on the state website to shift to Barge’s campaign venue.

- By Jim Galloway, Political Insider

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43 comments Add your comment

Rafe Hollister

September 28th, 2012
5:43 pm

Now if we could get Sebellius off the Obama campaign trail and back to advocating abortions.

Kris

September 28th, 2012
5:44 pm

This is another crooked DEAL will not benefit any one but the pocket lining politicians. The states website should NOT be used to promote this dirty deal called charter schools.

Vote No on this BOONDOGGLE.

If there is a question on the Ballot to be on the safe side just vote NO.

Impeach Deal.

Attack Dog

September 28th, 2012
5:44 pm

Dixiecrats want to issue charters for private operators to run taxpayer financed schools. This is small government? This is a joke, right?

Attack Dog

September 28th, 2012
5:48 pm

Talk about Obama and the Dems all you want, but when Dixiecrats complain about him and them, they are really looking and talking into a mirror.

Fix the problem

September 28th, 2012
5:51 pm

Why should the “lucky ones” whose number is drawn from a lottery get the “private” education. We don’t need another layer of government.

Mary Elizabeth

September 28th, 2012
6:03 pm

“Cardoza says Barge will continue to speak candidly about his opposition (to the constitutional amendment).”
————————————————————————-

As a public school teacher of 35 years who had dedicated my professional life to placing my students first in my commitment and focus, I continue to be impressed with Dr. Barge’s moral courage in behalf of public education in Georgia, in spite of stresses placed upon him by some of his opponents.

Kris

September 28th, 2012
6:17 pm

A friend sent this to me

League of Women Voters of Georgia announces opposition to charter school amendment
Elizabeth Poythress, president of the League of Women Voters of Georgia, announced Thursday that the state organization has voted to oppose the proposed constitutional amendment on charter schools that will appear on the ballot this November, and is urging all its members to vote “no” on the issue.
This proposal is unwise and wasteful, and we urge the voters of Georgia to vote “no” in November on this proposal to amend the state constitution

http://daltondailycitizen.com/local/x403296038/League-of-Women-Voters-of-Georgia-announces-opposition-to-charter-school-amendment

jesse105

September 28th, 2012
6:43 pm

Deal and his thugs are trying to silence Barge because they want these for-profit charter schools that have been giving the repubs big donations to get these contracts. Follow the money, people!

honested

September 28th, 2012
7:08 pm

Isn’t it a shame that we have quietly transferred ‘ownership’ of our Public School System to tentacles of the Chamber of Commerce?

What will it cost us to get the system back?

catlady

September 28th, 2012
7:19 pm

I will vote no to virtually ANY constitutional amendment, knowing full well that it will only benefit “certain well connected people” to the detriment of the common folks. (And I am about as common as you can get LOL) Almost everything we see in constitutional amendments is an effort, through tricky double-negative language, to get something by that will enrich the already rich, or protect the “leaders” in their lying and payoffs.

double

September 28th, 2012
7:22 pm

Kris all that kick back under table money called Deal Dough.

catlady

September 28th, 2012
7:24 pm

I am hoping this “opinion” also keeps OTHER leaders from injecting their opinions into any office-related activities. Good for the gooose…

Committed to freedom

September 28th, 2012
8:00 pm

Yes, it is up to the government employed teachers to brainwash and berate their students into telling their parents to opposed charter schools, not the superintendent. Doesn’t he understand the process. I mean if all these years of indoctrination can’t be put to good use in controlling the population (the primary goal of government education in the first place), then what good are they.

Use the tools you have. Let the teachers violate state law and what should be their own principles instead.

Here’s a thought. Why not allow qualified parties (meaning interested parties, not political parties – although they could be included) write a pro and con argument and then a rebuttal to the pro and con argument. Limit the word count or similar to keep it fair, and post that on the secretary of state’s page and maybe even encourage the lapdog media to publish on their dime. Of course document who the authors of each argument are (so people can evaluate for bias, etc.)

We might get an informed electorate regarding the issue and folks who show up to vote that actually know more about the issue than just what the biased media or superintendent have fed them. Do it for every ballot initiative.

If you really care about people knowing the issues, this is not a thorough approach, but is certainly a resonably balanced approach that would be very low cost and put the burden on the writers of the arguments to make their case. Also a check for lies would be nice too as we know how both liberals and conservatives both lie through their teeth.

Kris

September 28th, 2012
8:04 pm

@ jesse105 ,honestead, catlady…

AMEN…

@ double, may I add dirty Deal Dough.

I wonder if Barge was for it if the issue would have come up…..NOT.

Vote No on this chater school SCAM/BOONDOGGLE.

If there is a question on the Ballot to be on the safe side just vote NO.

Impeach Deal!

Debbie Dooley

September 28th, 2012
8:13 pm

I assure you all that the Governor is getting rich $$$ in office. Unbelievable! Stop the privatization and state control of our schools!

catlady

September 28th, 2012
8:37 pm

Committed: You must not know many teachers. We are getting “educated” from both sides, but I know of no one who has discussed it in their classes. Maybe in high school? Or maybe in some cities, but I doubt it here in the country.

More room for graft. That’s all I see.

double

September 28th, 2012
8:49 pm

No question on the ballot for me.I’m ok with charter schools,but prefere to keep money at home, local control.We do not need another state agency,to be subject to favoritism,lobbyist.Out of state for profit corporations.

cc

September 28th, 2012
9:03 pm

Too many administrators and government school teachers do a lousy job today. Maybe state sanctioned/run charter schools aren’t the answer. Home schooling can be absolutely great IF the parents are capable and up to the challenge. The results that I have seen from home schooling have been impressive, including college acceptance and performance.

Not PC

September 28th, 2012
9:07 pm

The next thing to be “contracted” out to private interests after public schools are replaced by charter schools will be the police, then the court system, and the military.

Unless you want to live in a neo-fascist nanny state supervised by massive contractor corporations you’d better stand up for your country.

Are people really aware

September 28th, 2012
9:11 pm

Don’t you think people will vote for this? Assuming all charters are good?

Kris

September 28th, 2012
9:16 pm

@ Not PC.

Case in point…Park Atlanta. Nuff said

@ Debbie Dooley “I assure you all that the Governor is getting rich $$$ in office. Unbelievable! Stop the privatization and state control of our schools!”

Another case in point. 6 months in office nearly 2milllion in debt GONE. Just like he will be soon.

Not the rantings of a mad person. I have been saying

IMPEACH Deal AND HIS CRONIES.

Kris

September 28th, 2012
9:46 pm

@ Are people really aware “Don’t you think people will vote for this? Assuming all charters are good?”

The vote as well as the outcome depends on how it is worded on the ballot. If it stands the wording in misleading perhaps tricking people into voting yes instead of NO. (another dirty DEAL)

Very misleading..

“Shall the Constitution of Georgia be amended to allow state or local approval of public charter schools upon the request of local communities?” — is misleading because it gives the impression that the state is not currently approving charter applications.

http://blogs.ajc.com/get-schooled-blog/2012/08/08/charter-school-question-on-nov-ballot-clarity-or-confusion/

Former Tea Partier

September 28th, 2012
9:47 pm

John Barge is a traitor.

honested

September 28th, 2012
9:52 pm

Former teaclown,

To who?

cc

September 28th, 2012
10:00 pm

“GONE. Just like he will be soon.”

Plan on running Roy Barnes against him . . . again?

td

September 28th, 2012
10:08 pm

Former Tea Partier

September 28th, 2012
9:47 pm

John Barge is a traitor.

You are full of crap. John Barge represents true conservative values in his opposition to this amendment. There is no conservative value that states a government body should take away the powers and duties of elected representatives and give them to an appointed commission that is not accountable to the voter.

Any Real Tea party member or true conservative will vote no on this amendment.

crankee-yankee

September 28th, 2012
10:31 pm

To all the charter supporters out there, are you in line to reap corporate benefits? Or are you just ignorant? There is nothing “conservative” about the amendment, it is a money game designed to suck taxpayer funds out of public education & put it into corporate coffers.
Or am I mistaken? Is true “conservatism” just a far right-wing ploy for stealing tax dollars?

hiram

September 28th, 2012
10:50 pm

Anyone who voted for the likes of Deal, Rogers, Ralston, et.al., is too dumb to process information.
Lipstick on a pig works…

double

September 28th, 2012
11:32 pm

At times TD makes a little sense.This liberal will vote no also.

Eric

September 29th, 2012
1:09 am

What bizarre statements!! Are you or aren’t you?

Real Athens

September 29th, 2012
2:39 am

The Constitution of Georgia

ARTICLE VIII.

EDUCATION

SECTION I.

PUBLIC EDUCATION
Paragraph I. Public education; free public education prior to college or postsecondary level; support by taxation. The provision of an adequate public education for the citizens shall be a primary obligation of the State of Georgia. Public education for the citizens prior to the college or postsecondary level shall be free and shall be provided for by taxation. The expense of other public education shall be provided for in such manner and in such amount as may be provided by law.

http://georgiainfo.galileo.usg.edu/conart8.htm

rawmilkdrinker

September 29th, 2012
4:15 am

Like the HOT lane on I-85 and coming soon I-75, this charter school plan seems to be, pay a private group to take it over and then later on the State will pay much more than it’s worth to take it back, therefore creating wealth all around from both directions. A lot like stockbrokers saying, ” buy this stock, it’s great and then sell this stock, it’s a loser,” while not pointing out that he is making his commision on both directions.

Buckhead Boy

September 29th, 2012
7:00 am

Not PC, sorry you missed it, but the Republicans did a pretty good job of out-sourcing much of the military and State Department security. The irony in their devotion to Blackwater and disdain for White Water was terribly amusing. And, they were just whacky for Whackenhut. Not as funny now with Blackwater re-naming itself Academi, although a mercenary army calling itself that is still pretty funny. Now that Halliburton and Whackenhut are headquartered overseas, I’m hoping that “W” will mention them in November when he gives the keynote speech to the “foreign investment” conference in the Caymans, and provide us with some new laughs.

John Konop

September 29th, 2012
7:39 am

The following are the protections I am asking for to support the amendment and or local school boards for the approval of charter schools:

No board members should be able to be a consultant, owner and or work for vendors, charter management contracts…..Full disclosure if they had any prior affiliation. No board member should be able to be on the board if they revived any form compensation in the last 2 years from any material vendor.

Full disclosure of any office holder and or relatives with any affiliation with vendors providing services for the school.

No board member and or officeholder should have any interest in the property the school uses
Full disclosure of any officeholder relatives employed by the charter school

Board meeting should be listed 30 days in advance on a set day after 7 pm, not at 10 am on random days with short notice….

Any school, with more than 750 students with a private management company should be required to put up bonding to make sure that the school fulfills the school year

Full disclosure on ownership of property the school uses ie detailed list with names of the people with any affiliation to the school and or officeholders

If the property has any ownership affiliation with the private management company it should be put up as security to pay back the government for any free tax payer dollars ie grants and management fees or expenses against the district eats via placing the kids back into public school via failure of the charter school.

Full disclosure of the contract between the private management company and the charter school. Once again a list of any cross affiliations….

Is this really asking too much, for protecting tax payers ?

Bob Loblaw

September 29th, 2012
7:45 am

Debbie Dooley…again, launching baseless attacks, making threats she won’t back up. Why do I look at this stuff in the morning?

Jaynie

September 29th, 2012
8:14 am

An appointed board, unanswerable to anyone but the political cronies. No, no, no, to this proposed amendment. I am appalled at the level of unethical behavior from our state politicians on many issues, but this is really scraping the bottom of the barrel, until there is no bottom left. And the wording of the amendement is horribly misleading. I used to think Sam Olens was a decent person and a pretty good manager of contentious issues, trying to find a center that all interested parties could accept and work within. Now, sadly, he is just another politician. Vote NO to the charter school amendment.

Gen. Andy Jackson

September 29th, 2012
8:17 am

“Fascism should more properly be called corporatism because it is the merger of state and corporate power.” — Benito Mussolini

John Konop

September 29th, 2012
8:47 am

Bob Loblaw,

Why or why not would you not support the above reforms I posted?

SFA

September 29th, 2012
8:52 am

What amazes me about this entire debate is that no one is seeing the bigger problem. While everyone is so focused on this charter school amendment the Common Core just moves right along doing far more damage to local control. If Superintendent Barge were consistent in his reasoning, he would have done everything possible to release Georgia from Race to the Top and the Common Core. What good is state or local control of education if parents and taxpayers and teachers have NO control over the content standards? ELA and math standards are in the hands of unelected boards who do not even reside in Georgia. The next shoe is soon about to drop. Common Core proponents are after the entire K-12 curriculum in all 50 states in any school that receives public funding. Education without representation has a bigger agenda than most have realized yet. I hope Georgia will wake up soon.

Rabbit

September 29th, 2012
11:10 am

Remember, a No vote on the Charter School Amendment is a vote to continue local control of your school resources. It is not a vote for choice. You have choices now and they are close to home. The amendment would drain resources from our local schools. There is scant evidence of the success of privately operated charter schools. The goal for them is profit, at the rest of our expense.

Rabbit

September 29th, 2012
11:12 am

I meant to say “a Yes vote is not a vote for choice.” A No vote will allow you to keep local control of decisions about your child’s education.

Rabbit

September 29th, 2012
11:18 am

SFA, the SCOTUS ruling on the medicaid portion of Obamacare may protect us from a uniform national standards, if, in fact we need that protection. When I read some of the state’s standards proposals, I worry we’ll be back to arguing over monkeys. Who would have dreamed society would regress over the last 40 years.
The damage of Richard Nixon and the growth of distrust in government since his time is underestimated.

Mitt the Twit

September 29th, 2012
1:25 pm

“Don’t know why everyone is so upset about the schools of Georgia being run more efficiently from the state level.
The fly-by-night charter school corporations will save millions by only having to bribe one group of state official rather than the inefficient current model where they have to bribe of dozens of local school boards to really hoover up the taxpayer money.
And the best part is that no matter if the children get a solid education at the charter schools or not, the charter school corporations still make millions. It’s a win/win.”

~ Mitt the Twit