Monday, June 14, 2010

Even Good Charter Schools do Bad Things...

So how much do charter and voucher parents need to know about the way their taxpayer dollars are being spent? If funding is misused, will charters be held to the same standards as public schools, or should parents be more forgiving?

This time a state audit was filed three years ago, and Ivy Academia continues unabated to grow its crooked vine. This is one of the good ones, according to Eduwank criteria. From L.A. Times:

The leaders of a high-performing San Fernando Valley charter school were charged this week with stealing more than $200,000 in public funds through embezzlement, money laundering and filing false tax returns, among other alleged crimes … couple faces 38 felony and misdemeanor counts for alleged actions from 2004 through 2009 in their operation of Ivy Academia, a charter school with test scores that place it in the state's top 30% of schools.

Especially in its early years, Ivy Academia generated a trail of critics among residential neighbors and some former parents and employees, who questioned the couple's forthrightness and practices.

The school's defenders point to a 2,000-student waiting list.

As much as I have railed against the development of parallel school systems and the diversion of taxpayer money to private interests, I would also like to see successful programs like Ivy's encouraged and duplicated in public schools, minus the illegal activity.

New administrators, fines and a more open policy of accountability to parents is something long over due for charter and vouchers schools.

1 comment:

  1. one thing to watch out for is their 80% policy. They say anything under an 80% (ei. grades, tests, quizzes, etc. is not exceptable. It allows some charter schools in mid Wisconsin to brag that 100% of their kids are getting all A's & B's.
    Problems they don't tell you is that if a student gets less than that he/she has to repeat those asignments until 80% or better is reached without time limits causing the student to fall further and further behind. Some students are already up to 2 years behind their public school counterparts. To protect their status and government funding these students are urged to rejoin public schools or labelled as "troublemakers", "disruptive"