Florida to be epicenter for School Choice Week

School Choice Week will launch in January.  Jacksonville, the home area of the chair of Florida’s Board of Education will launch the week with a nationally televised rally of students, educators and school choice supporters.  This  ‘celebration of choice’ will include all forms of choice from public to private including online and home schools.  The strategy of inclusion does not mask the serious legal and regulatory issues rampant in school choice programs. 

The League supports public schools and opposes sending tax dollars directly or indirectly to private schools.  For-profit charter management companies are under federal investigation.  Florida needs to lead the nation in well managed choice within the public school system. 

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  1. Many thanks to Sue Legg for leading this blog and for her commitment to public education. We owe a debt of gratitude to the League of Women Voters of Florida for their Charter School Study and to the Florida School Board Association for coming up with Legislative Priorities for 2015 that reflect an understanding of the dangers of many of the so-called educational reform initiatives including the charter school movement. Most charter schools duplicate the curriculum in traditional schools. Rarely do they innovate and rarely do their students show better educational outcomes. Charter schools in many areas are re-segregating students.

    It is time for legislators and citizens across the nation to follow the money and realize that our some of our precious tax dollars that are supposed to go to EDUCATION are actually going into the pockets of private individuals who work for the for-profit charter school industry. By financing these enterprises with public school dollars, we are subsidizing businesses and pulling funding from traditional schools. With public dollars, we continue to finance the proliferation of these businesses. Of great concern is that the public is duped by false advertising that these for profit schools have better educational outcomes than traditional ones. Many of the educational management organizations (EMOs) that work with school districts and charter schools are under federal investigation for false advertising and profiteering, yet they continue to find ways to operate. NM Virtual Academy which runs through Farmington Municipal Skills is run by K12Inc EMO. Though our attorney general declared it unconstitutional, it is still in business and operating, duping parents, officials, and students into believing that it will produce excellent results in student achievement. The enormous withdrawal rate is never examined. There is no mechanism to follow up on students who withdraw saying they will be home-schooled, but chances are they will never complete their high school educations.

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