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

Monday, September 28, 2009

Merits of Gloucester, MA Charter Proposal Made Irrelevant By Political Considerations

When Secretary Paul Reville felt the heat applied by the corporate media at the Boston Globe and the philantrho-capitalists at the Boston Foundation, he sent an email to Commissioner Mitchell Chester urging his support for reasons that had nothing to do with the merits of the charter application. Note, too, in the story by Pamela Campbell, that two other proposals were dismissed for reasons that had nothing to do with the merits of their proposals, either. Here is a clip, but do get the rest here:
The revelation that state Secretary of Education Paul Reville urged for approval of the Gloucester Community Arts Charter School for political reasons, rather than the merits of the proposal, has thrown yet another wrench into plans for a charter school in Gloucester.

In the e-mail, dated Feb. 5, 2009, Reville urges state Education Commissioner Mitchell Chester, co-chair of the Board of Education and Secondary Education, to approve at least one charter application that had been submitted in the fall of 2008 or risk sending “the wrong signal.

“Our reality is that we have to show some sympathy in this group of charters or we’ll get permanently labeled as hostile and that will cripple us with a number of key, moderate allies [listed were the Boston Globe and the Boston Foundation, both considered strong advocates of the charter movement].

“It really is a matter of positioning ourselves so that we can be viable to implement the rest of our agenda,” the e-mail continues. “My inclination is to think that you, I, and the governor all need to send at least one positive signal in this batch, and gather you think the best candidate is Gloucester. Can you see your way clear to supporting it?”

The e-mail was originally obtained by the Gloucester Daily Times and published in its Sept. 19 edition. . . .

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