DeVos Doles Out $399 Million to Charter Schools and Charter Organizations

Diane Ravitch's blog

Politico reports the latest federal handouts for charter schools and charter advocacy organizations, as well as to state agencies.

There is no sector of American education less in need of federal funding than charter schools. They have the support of the nation’s largest philanthropies—think Bill Gates, the Walton family, Eli Broad, Michael Bloomberg, Reed Hastings, etc.—as well as abundant gifts from the financial industry and individual billionaires.

Among the federal grants was $2.4 million to the California Charter Schools Association, the richest lobby in the state, which fights any legislative efforts to establish accountability and prohibit conflicts of interest and self-dealing.

Betsy DeVos has put the Trump administration strongly behind charter schools. The Trump administration puts no money into establishing ethical standards or financial oversight for charters. They pretend to want a “free market,” but free markets are not subsidized by the federal government. In a free market, businesses make…

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How School Choice in Michigan Accelerates Student Mobility, Stresses Educators, and Undermines Education

janresseger

Yesterday this blog examined how two school choice policies in Michigan—the rapid expansion of charter school choice and cross-district open enrollment that allows students to leave their school district and enroll in a nearby school district—are together undermining the fiscal viability of Michigan’s public school districts. Here, thanks to a collaboration between Chalkbeat, Bridge Magazine, and the Detroit Free Press is the story of how these very same policies are undermining teaching and learning in the Detroit Public Schools.

Reporters Erin Einhorn and Chastity Pratt Dawsey describe how cross-district and charter school choice are accelerating student churn as children change schools again and again.  In Detroit, the subject of the article, student mobility is also exacerbated by homelessness and foreclosure and other challenges posed by extreme poverty across the school population. But there is an additional factor: Detroit is part of a network of so-called “portfolio school districts”

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