Charter schools: Good or bad?

Discussion in 'The Red Room' started by Dinner, Sep 10, 2019.

  1. Dinner

    Dinner 2012 & 2014 Master Prognosticator

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    Teacher’s unions hate charter schools and always try to shut them down but a lot of parents love charter schools and wait in long lines hoping to get their child into charter schools. Who is right?

  2. RickDeckard

    RickDeckard Socialist

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    Stupid binary choice is stupid. If public schools were properly funded and run, then this kind of model would not be so popular.
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  3. Dinner

    Dinner 2012 & 2014 Master Prognosticator

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    Funding really doesn’t seem to be the problem. Half a million dollars per class does indeed sound like sufficient funding the problem is all the bloated overhead outside of the classroom.
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  4. tafkats

    tafkats That'll put marzipan in your pie plate, bingo! Moderator

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    They're good if they are run by nonprofits, are responsible stewards of public money, and offer students a choice that they couldn't get within a one-size-fits-all school system.

    They're bad if their primary purpose is to funnel money to a for-profit education service company, unaccountable to the public in any meaningful way, for the purpose of fattening the wallets of that company's executives and shareholders.
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  5. K.

    K. Sober

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    They're also bad if they get to pick and choose pupils while competing for financing with public schools that don't get to pick students.
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  6. Federal Farmer

    Federal Farmer Anti-Federalist

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    Some are good, some are bad. I’ve seen many libertarians talk about them, including John Stossel and they seem to come to the same conclusion, it depends on how they are being ran. We’ve thrown a ton of money at public schools and that never really seems to work. Charter schools are another option for parents and inner city kids usually have a lottery to decide who goes, so the school really has no say in it.
  7. Dinner

    Dinner 2012 & 2014 Master Prognosticator

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    In the example in the video charter schools only get 70% of the funding public schools get. Yet get far higher test scores.
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  8. Dinner

    Dinner 2012 & 2014 Master Prognosticator

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    https://ed100.org/blog/are-charter-schools-good-or-evil

    I am not sure who is behind that source, probably and interested party (and it seems focused on my home state of California) but this section is interesting.

    It does say that in California charter schools seem to be performing about the same as public schools so the main difference seems to be what is taught and what the requirements are (often charters require things like school uniforms). The video in the OP was in Philadelphia where supposedly charter schools did better on tests.
  9. Federal Farmer

    Federal Farmer Anti-Federalist

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    Most of the time the curriculum is traditionally humanities based. They want you to have a more well rounded education and not just focus on STEM classes. That’s not to say that those aren’t available. I personally think that’s the way it should be instead of overemphasizing STEM studies. Nobody seems to learn civics anymore.
  10. Kommander

    Kommander Mostly dick play.

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    I went to one for two years of middle school and my freshman year of high school, that was facilitated by Edison Learning. The school district I was in wanted to try it out first, so they had the regular school and the charter school in the same building. They eventually decided not to switch to a charter school. The one I went to sucked.

    My school district encouraged all the kids who were having problems in school to switch to the charter school, because that might work to help them do better. This resulted in the majority of the students being thugs and wanna-be thugs who didn't want to be there, and kids with learning disabilities who didn't want to be there.

    Some of the teachers were already in the school district, but most of them were new. Some of them gave a shit, but didn't have the experience necessary to handle thugs and ADHD. In my time there several teachers quit because they couldn't control their students and classrooms.

    The staff of the charter school wanted to work with the staff of the regular school, but the regular school staff wasn't having it. Having two different schools, with two different sets of administrators, who don't work together, in the same building, created a shit ton of conflicts.

    I was struggling with school because I needed to be seeing a therapist and probably needed to be on medication. My dad, however, thought I needed to be punished more. At one of the many meetings between the school staff and my parents, where they were strongly encouraging him to take me to a therapist, instead he was like "just make him repeat the 7th grade. I've been punishing him since Kindergarten when he doesn't perform well in school and all it does is make him too anxious to focus on school work and he just gets worse over time, so, obviously the best course of action is to keep punishing him instead of trying to find something else that works." When that didn't work a semester later, they decided to put me in 8th grade so I could start high school the following year. When I made the switch, I had the same classes with the same coursework. The shit the 8th graders were learning was the same stuff I was doing in 7th grade, year 2. That seems... dumb.

    Probably unrelated, but one of the teachers got in legal trouble for sleeping with a student, and another one got caught trying to pick up 14-year-olds online. A third invited me over to her place when I was talking to her after school once. I think she forgot she was talking to a student, who was a minor, at the time, but I don't know what kind of sick, twisted, extremely fun shit she might have been planning because my dumb ass turned her down because I didn't want to have to explain to my dad why I was several hours late coming home from school and why my cute 24-year-old teacher had dropped me off. I found her on Facebook a while ago and I keep meaning to message her because a bit of "private tutoring" 20 years later wouldn't be unethical.

    Anyway, with charter schools, it could be good, it could be shit, it could be okay, it could be your child fucking their teachers. There's no way to be sure without researching a given school.
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  11. Fisherman's Worf

    Fisherman's Worf Hamachi is a fish best served cold

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    Charter schools, in combination with the deliberate defunding of public education, are just a 21st century attempt at segregation along racial and economic lines.
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  12. Shirogayne

    Shirogayne Trolling No Jutsu Formerly Important

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    That's the big kicker right here. A lot of them don't deal with problem children or those who otherwise need accomodation. In the middle class neighborhoods, they end up becoming akin to elite free private education.

    As Tucker pointed out, they can be a tool for good in assisting students who may need a bit more help or a bit more of a challenge than a traditional school can provide, but those tend to be the rare exception rather than the rule.
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  13. Minsc&Boo

    Minsc&Boo Fresh Meat

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    That one school shooter was from a charter school to over competitive!
  14. Rimjob Bob

    Rimjob Bob Fruitloop Actual

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    If the success of a charter school is dependent on being selective about whom it enrolls, then this fails to serve the public interest of making sure all children get a quality education. And yet the public is funding these operations.

    Public funds used selectively on the students who probably need it the least -- that's the charter school system. Calling it 21st Century Segregation isn't far off.

    Raise taxes on the wealthy to fund and manage public schools properly.

    That being said, parents should have more than one choice of public schools.
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  15. Dinner

    Dinner 2012 & 2014 Master Prognosticator

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    Do other states allow them to be selective? In California they must be non-selective according to the law.

    Now, with school choice which we’ve had since the 1990’s the students with the highest GPAs get to pick first so the best schools still get stalked but most students still just go to their closest neighborhood school.
  16. Rimjob Bob

    Rimjob Bob Fruitloop Actual

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    It's actually a hot issue in PA at the moment. The Dem governor is trying to regulate charters in many dimensions, including how selective they can be. The opposition wants them to continue to have a free hand.

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/educ...pennsylvanias-charter-school-sector-this-big/
    Last edited: Sep 10, 2019
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  17. Federal Farmer

    Federal Farmer Anti-Federalist

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    It’s a state by state basis. IMO, they shouldn’t allowed to be selective.
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  18. T.R

    T.R Don't Care

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    They are selective because there are usually long lines of parents who can't wait to take their kids out of a failing public school. So say a charter opens that can seat 600 students and over a thousand apply. How do critics wish for them to handle that?

    Here in Florida the money follows the child. So if a child leaves public school for a charter their funding transfers with them and vice versa. Also if a charter school fails two years in a row they are closed down, which never happens in public schools. At worse, the state takes over the public school, but they are still allowed to operate.

    Another thing charter school critics never consider is why DO so many parents want to send their kids to charters when they don't even provide busing? It's because when it comes to their kids they could give two shits about politics. If your child is getting ready to start his education, but you know that his assigned school is routinely rated F why would you want to send him there? If your child is being bullied and the system doesn't do anything about it, you're going to take your kid out of that environment. Or if your child is having difficulties learning and his teacher isn't able to reach him, you're going to look for alternatives. You can blame state funding all you want, but when charters are able to accomplish what public schools can't with the same dollars then something is terribly wrong with the way public schools are operating.
    Last edited: Sep 10, 2019
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  19. Federal Farmer

    Federal Farmer Anti-Federalist

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    The video in the OP says they’re getting less money and still doing better than the public schools.
  20. T.R

    T.R Don't Care

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    Pennsylvania isn't Florida. Over here local school boards aren't allowed to deny charters their funding.

    Having now watched that video I ask everyone who criticizes charters, what do you say to that mother, her children and all the others in Philly who are benefiting from charters? Doesn't the fact that thousands of parents show up to a LOTTERY in the hopes of getting their kids out of failing public schools mean that something besides funding is the problem. And doesn't a lottery kind of blow up the whole "selective" bit?
    Last edited: Sep 10, 2019
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  21. Dinner

    Dinner 2012 & 2014 Master Prognosticator

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    This claim seems nonsensical on its face. If you bothered to watch the video charters (at least in Philadelphia) only get 70% of the funds public schools get so public schools actually get an additional $70,000 for every student who goes to a charter.

    How is giving public schools more money “defunding”?
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  22. Dinner

    Dinner 2012 & 2014 Master Prognosticator

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    In the video about charter schools in Philadelphia they used a lottery system to decide which kids get to go. You are right that they had way more kids whose parents wanted their kids out of their failing local public school though.
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  23. Federal Farmer

    Federal Farmer Anti-Federalist

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    The lottery system seems fair to me.:shrug:
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  24. Soma

    Soma OMG WTF LOL STFU ROTFL!!!

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    Yes, this is a good thing. :)
  25. Shirogayne

    Shirogayne Trolling No Jutsu Formerly Important

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    To be fair, it's not like many school districs even have free busing anymore, either and even then, you'd get arrested for "free range parenting" if the little brats have to walk further than 50 feet to the bus stop, so... :shrug:
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  26. K.

    K. Sober

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    Are all kids automatically enrolled in the lottery?
    Are there ways for charter schools to kick out students after they have won the lottery?
    Are there financial or other hurdles for pupils to attend the charter school (transport, books, uniforms, parent involvement)?

    The video in the OP shows a dedicated, apparently successful headmaster. If you want kids to have great schools, you want a system that attracts him to the public school system. You want active, engaged parents to improve their public schools. You want motivated pupils at the public schools.
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  27. The Night Funky

    The Night Funky BMF Staff Member Moderator

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    Bad. Right now, there's a huge debate about charter schools in TN. The state legislature and governorship are Republican-controlled, but the only way the legislature could get a bill passed authorizing charter schools was to tailor it so that only heavily Democratic counties could have them. Almost none of the Democrats in the legislature voted in favor of charter schools. Seems to me, if they were all that great, the counties which were overwhelmingly Republican would be wanting the charter schools, while doing everything they could to deny heavily Democratic counties from getting charter schools. Yet, that's not how things worked out. Odd.
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  28. Rimjob Bob

    Rimjob Bob Fruitloop Actual

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    Depends on how blind it is.
  29. Professor Sexbot

    Professor Sexbot ERROR: 404

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    John Stossel isn't exactly an unbiased source.
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  30. Shirogayne

    Shirogayne Trolling No Jutsu Formerly Important

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    The big problem with schools in America is that funding comes almost entirely from the tax base of it's neighborhood. If few people own houses, there's no money to support the school apart from gaming the standardized testing system. I know in Germany, the money for school funding is a bit more evenly distributed and those schools with lower (and private) test scores get priority for resources that will get the kids in shape.

    As TR said, parents don't care about political correctness when it comes to education of their kids. Considering both parents work full time, very few parents have the time and energy it takes to be involved in unfucking our school system.
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