Wednesday, November 4, 2015
Superintendent Vitti is not doing his job.
Despite “serious reservations” Vitti recommends a for profit charter school, he’s not doing his job.
Last night Superintendent Vitti recommended a new charter school to be approved in district 2 (the beaches area) despite the fact he said he had “serious reservations”.
Maybe he had "serious reservations" because Charter Schools USA is a for profit company with a mixed track record especially here in Duval County. They have been in the news a lot recently for poor scheduling, missing grades and a possible civil rights violation case.
Maybe he had “serious reservations” because several of the proposed schools sister schools, notably the schools in Arlington and the Westside have performed poorly.
Maybe he had “serious reservations” because the six schools closest to the proposed site are all doing well, 4As, 1B and 1C and three of those schools are underutilized.
Maybe he had “serious reservations” because it will be managed by a board that wasn’t elected but also doesn’t live in Jacksonville and manages dozens of charters in several different cities.
Maybe he had “serious reservations” because the application met only six of nineteen benchmarks.
There are lots of reasons he may have had “serious reservations” but it made me think what he hasn’t paired the words “serious reservations” with.
I bet he never said, I have “serious reservations” about putting that principal in place.
I bet he never said, I have “serious reservations” about spending millions of dollars on whatever new technology the district is investing in.
I bet he never said, I have “serious reservations” about sending my children to whatever schools they are going to.
I imagine there are numerous things he never paired “serious reservations” with because as superintendent it is his job to keep children away from things that give him “serious reservations”. I guess with the exception of charter schools that will educate potentially hundreds or thousands of children. Why do charter schools get a pass? After all these schools can and many have done a lot of damage to students and communities.
At almost the exact same moment Superintendent Vitti and the anti-public education members of the board were voting to approve the new Charter Schools USA school, Palm Beach County was saying no to them and they haven’t had nearly the problems with Charter Schools USA that Duval has had.
No they just said the school was not innovative, the supposed motivation behind charter schools, which were initially billed as parent teacher laboratories of innovation. Now most are little more than profit centers for corporations.
Palm Beach isn’t the only county saying no to Charter Schools USA either. Pasco County said no thanks too just last month.
Why are those counties saying no, while we are saying yes, despite the superintendent’s “serious reservations”?
The superintendent and board have often lamented the loss of resources to charter schools which hurt our public schools but time and time again they have voted to approve new ones, even in neighborhoods that have successful public schools. It makes me wonder who they are really working for.
I have “serious reservations” about the job that this superintendent and board are doing and you should too.