Let's add 'em up: charter schools in California are eligible for 1) state per pupil funding equal to public schools, 2) chunks of the half-billion dollars each year from the federal Charter School Program (CSP) grants, 3) hundreds of millions from white philanthropic oligarchs and high rollers who see total compliance charter schools as the solution to what white philanthropists of the last century referred to as "the Negro problem," and 4) hundreds of millions available under new federal relief for small businesses.
And on top of that, you may add the stacks of cash saved by charter schools operating as non-profit corporations.
From the San Francisco Chronicle:
. . . . Fourteen charter schools or chains in Oakland combined to receive roughly $20 million from the program. They included Education for Change, which runs six schools in the city and received $5.25 million, and Lighthouse Community Public Schools, which has two campuses and got $2.3 million.
Eight charter schools or chains in Santa Clara County combined to receive roughly $20 million. All but one received at least $1.5 million. Summit Public Schools, which has three schools in the county and a total of eight in the Bay Area, received $6.8 million.
At least two schools in San Francisco received loans. San Francisco Creative Arts Charter School got nearly $600,000. Envision Education’s City Arts and Tech High School also received a loan, but says the money will go to its consulting business — not the school that is supported by public funds. It did not divulge the amount it received.
And the St. Hope charter schools in Sacramento, whose board is chaired by school choice advocate Michelle Rhee and which was founded by her husband, former Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson, received more than $1.5 million.
Some of the loans were first publicized by Parents United for Public Schools and In the Public Interest, which oppose charter schools and the privatization of education. The Chronicle independently verified their research and conducted its own.
Traditional public schools are not eligible for the Paycheck Protection Program, and state-funded charter schools’ access to the loans raises questions among their critics about fairness.
“Because charter schools are currently receiving full funding as public schools intended to maintain employees, while at the same time receiving funding as private entities that are also intended to maintain employees, taxpayers are left covering what appears to be the same bill twice,” the groups said in a report questioning whether Oakland schools were “double dipping” on funds.
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