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

Sunday, June 25, 2017

Ravitch for "eventual absorption" of Charter Schools

Diane Ravitch's Network for Public Education (NPE) recently published a position statement on charter schools that directly challenges her widely-heralded commitment to quality public schools for all children who choose them.

NPE's new statement on charter schools explicitly acknowledges that Ravitch and her corporate union patrons support the continued operation of the nation’s 7,500 segregated charter schools, now draining away billions of public dollars each year for the principal benefit of racist corporate colonizers in urban communities (my bolds): 

. . . we recognize that many families have come to depend on charter schools and that many charter school teachers are dedicated professionals who serve their students well. It is also true that some charter schools are successful. We do not, therefore, call for the immediate closure of all charter schools, but rather we advocate for their eventual absorption into the public school system. We look forward to the day when charter schools are governed not by private boards, but by those elected by the community, at the district, city or county level. 

Unfortunately for the supporters of quality public schools for all children who choose them, NPE offers no plan for how Diane’s “look forward” to the eventual "absorption" of charter schools might occur or to how public governance of charters might be achieved.  No demands are made, and no strategy is outlined.  

It seems too much to ask, I think, that we should expect the operators of the nation’s 7,500 charter school, which now make up almost 10 percent of K-12 American schools, will tire of the billions of public dollars collected each year for implementing the paternalist dehumanization program that white philanthropists have chosen for the children of the poor. 

When Diane claims that “some charter schools are successful,” we may reasonably assume that she is referring now, as she has in the past, to those KIPP Model schools that are so effective culturally sterilizing and behaviorally neutering black and brown children in urban centers.  Since 2010, Diane has acknowledged the "wonderful results" that KIPP Model schools produce.  At Rice University in 2010, she said:

“What I want to say to KIPP, because I really really admire what you are doing. You have an excellent reputation, you get great results. Thousands of new charters will be created in the wake of your success. But your results are not typical. 

Two years later in 2012, she issued a further challenge to KIPP, Inc.:

I reiterate my challenge of two years ago: KIPP should find an impoverished district that is so desperate that it is willing to put all its students into KIPP’s care. Take them all: the children with disabilities, the children who don’t speak English, the children who are homeless, the children just released from the juvenile justice system,  the children who are angry and apathetic, and everyone else. No dumping. No selection. No cherry picking. 

Take them all?  Really?  Even if KIPP wanted to “take them all,” which they do not for fear of damaging their brand, what could be more distressing than the thought of all disadvantaged urban children in KIPP Model schools?  

Sadly, KIPP Model schools have earned their reputations as zero tolerance segregated testing chain-gangs where cultural scrubbing, character manipulations, and neurological alterations of segregated populations have become the preferred methods for “improving” the oppressed and their communities, thus making them assets rather than liabilities.  

Meanwhile, Diane continues to ignore the racist compliance training that the KIPP Model's "Broken Windows" brand of schooling imposes, which has made KIPP and its many emulators the favored tax-deductible charities of corporate elites from both political parties.


  1. Anonymous8:26 PM

    A more realistic scenario will be the eventual extinction of public schools serving low income children. As to the "success" of charter schools, it is nearly impossible to isolate the variables in the parasitic relationship of charter schools to their host districts. In the zero sum game, traditional public schools are the clear losers.

    Abigail Shure

  2. Anonymous1:08 PM

    The distressing thing for me is that one "successful" Charter School System in Detroit is doing a kind or recycling in that a School get's beautifully "fixed up" and then after enrolling students and teachers for several years, then turns around and sells the school to a Wealthy group for presumably tax benefit purposes and then moves on hence double profiting from this scheme.

    In another Case I know the Head of the Committee raising fund for a school which he said way outperforms the Grosse Pointe schools. He was lied to by the Charter perpetrator. I sent him some scores from that charter compared with those of the local Chrysler Public School which exceeded what he was being told. It appears that lying is involved in pulling off these schools.