Thursday, December 29, 2011

The Charter School Truth!

Here's Brenda Konkel's post regarding the controversial charter school, Madison Prep, and the NAACP's position on the issue that bears repeating. The facts are all true: 
If you were confused about Madison Prep and feeling a little liberal white guilt about not supporting it, well, there is good reason for the confusion Yup, Urban League vs. NAACP. Here’s the NAACP official national position on Charter Schools. (Link here) The position is just a little over a year oldThis resolution is now the policy of the Association, and is “binding on the Board of Directors, the Executive Committee, the Officers, and all units.”
WHEREAS, charter schools are public schools which were originally designed to explore new approaches to educate students; and in some cases, charter schools have become a school model that is used to segregate students; and charter schools have too seldom informed the education community regarding innovative instructional strategies that accelerate academic achievement in the general population of students; and the Center for Research in Educational Outcomes (CREDO) which examined charter school data in fifteen (15) states and the District of Columbia confirmed that only 17% of the charter school students in the study outperformed their peers, while 46% performed no better and 37% performed worse; and charter schools operate more autonomously than traditional public schools in the use of funds, adherence to state laws and school policies, selection and removal of students, and the selection and removal of staff, thus creating separate and unequal conditions for success; and charter schools draw funding away from already underfunded traditional public schools;

and the NAACP recognizes that at best, quality charter schools serve only a small percentage of children of color and disadvantaged students for whom the NAACP advocates relative to said population left behind in failing schools; and the NAACP recognizes the urgent need to provide quality education for all children, not only those fortunate enough to win lotteries to attend existing quality charter schools; and the NAACP is committed to finding broad based, effective solutions for immediate implementation to improve the quality of public education for all children.

THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that the NAACP will strongly advocate for immediate, overarching improvements to the existing public education system; and that the NAACP rejects the emphasis on charter schools as the vanguard approach for the education of children, instead of focusing attention, funding, and policy advocacy on improving existing, low performing public schools and will work through local, state and federal legislative processes to ensure that all public schools are provided the necessary funding, support and autonomy necessary to educate all students; and that the NAACP will urge all of its Units to work to support public schools throughout the nation to educate all children to their highest potential.

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