Is the U.S. Department of Education experimenting with our Children’s Future

IUSDAccording to their website, the U.S. Department of Education’s (ED) mission is to promote student achievement and preparation for global competitiveness by fostering educational excellence and ensuring equal access.  ED supplements states, local districts, public and private institution to further access to a quality education.  Through encouraging parents to participate ED hopes to achieve these goals.

Currently, public institutions receive the bulk of ED funding.  As the value of public education declined, parents wanted different alternatives. In 1993 California Proposition 174 was placed on the ballot in support of providing vouchers to pay tuition for schools outside of the public school option.  The proposition was soundly defeated with 70% of the voters voting no.  As public education continued to further decline, years later in 1996, the U.S. Dept. of Ed found a solution in the form of creating the Charter Schools Program  (CSP) which provides grants of up to $575k between the years of 2010-2015.  The grants would cover the implementation of new charter schools.

Apparently people have been watching the Decade of Decline in the Inglewood USD (IUSD) for the applications for charter schools increased dramatically.  With IUSD board members approving dependent charter schools, the money would continue to flow through IUSD first, then distributed to the schools.  Independent charters receive the money outright with no passing through the grubby hands of the IUSD board.

Charter schools enjoy the comfort of admitting only select students, can force parent involvement and dismiss bad students and/or teachers is a win-win for parents.  An institution that provides a free education but also holds the parents accountable for their children.  Will the accountability in public education end if the charter school program fails to stay adequately funded?

If the CSP eventually run out will parents be forced to pay a share of cost of their child’s education?  If the local school districts sell off property, charter schools begin to charge, parents will ultimately try to return to their home FREE district.  THen you run into the problem currently facing Hermosa Beach Cities School District, they sold school property when enrollment declined and now with enrollment over capacity (public schools has to take EVERYONE) where do they find the room to house the students?  Even leasing schools to charter schools could pose another problem should the CSP funding eventually cease.

I wonder if Tom Torlakson, Richard Zeiger, LaTanya Kirk-Carter and the FCMAT are preparing for that reality as well?

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About Melissa

I am a lifelong Inglewood resident living in District 4. I serve on PTA and School Site Council as Vice-President, for the last 8 years with Inglewood Unified School District. I volunteer on the Wellness Committee for ICEF Public Schools. I am an alumni of California State University, Dominguez Hills with a degree in Political Science. You can find me on Twitter under @CreoleMommie

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