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

Saturday, August 15, 2015

KIPP Non-Profit? Don't Ask David Fox

Some hedge fund operators like to point to the evidence of their generosity as measured by huge donations to non-profit charter schools like KIPP.  KIPP's non-profit corporate status, however, only underscores its corporate welfare foundation and its super-lucrative business model.

Not only do corporate donors garner huge tax credits by helping to fund these test prep chain gangs, but the KIPP Foundation and its officers are allowed in the process to amass hundreds of millions each year in "non-profit" dollars from federal, state, and local governments.

For instance, if KIPP is paid on average $10,000 for each of its 700,000 students nationwide each year, that amounts to $700,000,000 collected from taxpayers in a single year. On top of that are the rich real estate deals that corporate politicians have made possible for KIPP in Nashville, DC, San Francisco, Houston, etc.

It's no wonder that hedge funds and former hedge funder managers like Nashville mayoral candidate, David Fox, are bullish on the No Excuses charters like KIPP and Rocketship. The potential gain for Wall Street and its investors are simply enormous in tax credits and real estate deals, and those private gains come at the expense of public taxpayers and the most vulnerable children who are dehumanized in the process of being mis-educated within a system of penal pedagogy.

Fox, by the way, is the only candidate who is on record as supporting a non-elected Nashville school board that would be appointed by the mayor, and he is the only candidate who wants to turn Nashville schools into a charter system like New Orleans.

You may be assured, however, that Mr. and Mrs. Fox would never allow their three children to be schooled in these total compliance, lockdown environments like KIPP.  That kind of oppression is reserved for the least advantaged, and it represents the kind of elitist paternalism that Giuliani made famous in New York with "broken windows" policing of the poor in the 1990s. 

Nonetheless, Fox and his friends are eager to increase the return for their hedge fund philanthrocapitalist investors by betting on a sure thing as long as the general public remains in the dark on how these corporate welfare kingpins operate.

The bottom line on "no excuses" non-profit schools: it's about the bottom line.  Corporate charter schools represent a lucrative business model, not a viable education model.

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