The Spark

the Voice of
The Communist League of Revolutionary Workers–Internationalist

“The emancipation of the working class will only be achieved by the working class itself.”
— Karl Marx

Robbing School Children—And for What!

Dec 20, 2004

On November 12, the Baltimore City school board approved three new charter schools and seven existing charter schools for next year–with funding taken from the public schools. In mid-December, two more charter schools won approval to open in Baltimore next year.

These schools are given $4,300 per student from public school funding. Yet they don’t have to meet the same requirements that public schools do. In Baltimore city, four of the seven existing charter schools wouldn’t even put their students through the same standardized tests that public school students took. These schools operate independently from the school board, choosing their own staff, hours and curricula for the students.

Parents send their children to charter schools because they feel–with reason–that the public schools have failed to educate their children. In Baltimore, for example, only one in three students met standards in reading in high school.

But what are the results for charter schools after 12 years in existence, educating about one million students (out of 50 million ) all across the country?

The latest studies show charter schools are less likely than public schools to meet national standards. There have been national and local studies comparing charter schools to public schools. All the studies show similar results–namely, that students in charter schools don’t do as well as similar students in public schools.

This should come as no surprise since the people running them drain off money for their own interests, whether business, religious–or even as university laboratories.

The charter school movement promises what it doesn’t deliver–and steals from publicly-supported schools to do it.