Charter schools can ignore the rules imposed on regular public schools while taking public school funds. Supporters argue that Kentucky schools are “failing” and charters schools will fix that problem. This is based on two flawed assumptions.
First, Kentucky’s public schools consistently rank in the top half of various national rankings, despite decreasing state funding and the challenges created by high poverty.
Second, a charter school can limit enrollment to the “best” students, deny admission to other qualified students, hire untrained teachers and ignore state curriculum requirements and tests. Yet, years of studies on charters schools in other states show that they often perform no better, and often worse, than regular public schools.
Let’s apply this logic to law enforcement. Most would agree that departments are short on funds and resources to deal with the crushing burdens presented by poverty and drug addiction. But no one is suggesting that we create “charter police forces” that drain already limited public funding and ignore the rules and laws that apply to others.
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Public education in Kentucky will not be improved by reducing already scare funding and undercutting existing public schools. Please contact your state representatives and the governor to ask them to reject charter schools in Kentucky.
Cynthia W. Resor