"A child's learning is the function more of the characteristics of his classmates than those of the teacher." James Coleman, 1972

Sunday, December 02, 2007

Fenty-Rhee Move Forward With Stealth Privatization Plan

From WaPo:

. . . . In addition to Bunker Hill, the schools on the closure list are: M.M. Washington Career High School and special education center; Bertie Backus Middle; John Burroughs, J.F. Cook and Slowe elementary schools; and either Young Elementary or Brown Middle -- two adjacent schools that will be combined at one location into a pre-K to eighth-grade school.

The total reported student enrollment in those schools is 1,555 students. But the school by school picture is the most telling. For example, Slowe Elementary has seen its enrollment decline by 64 percent in the past five years; this year there were 83 students enrolled in the school as of October in a building with a capacity for 451 students. A charter school, Mary McLeod Bethune, has about 80 students at Slowe this year under a one-year lease with the school system.

And there could be more space-sharing agreements. With the release of the closure proposal, Deputy Mayor for Education Victor Reinoso and his staff are following up on a survey they circulated this year to charter schools that solicited preferences for D.C. school buildings. Fenty (D) pledged last week that school buildings left vacant by closures would not be sold, but he did not indicate how the buildings might be used. . . .

Does the Washington Post or anyone else in DC have any doubt that the Fenty-Rhee plan is to hand over the closed public schools to charter school corporations to control and govern, the MacSchool franchises that will offer the politicians a 20% discount by slashing programs and salaries, while offering nothing in terms of learning to recommend them over the public schools that will be shuttered? Will parents and teachers allow this privatization venture to get a foothold? Will the corporate media of the Washinton Post bother to pretend to present the facts???

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