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Thursday, February 23, 2012

Is Florida pushing back against Charter Schools?

By Scathing Purple Musings

by Bob Sykes

In the New Times yesterday Lisa Rab reported that Palm Beach county school district officials recommended that Maverick’s application for three new charter schools be denied. Today the school board agreed and voted 6-0 to deny the applications. No discussion. No debate and no representatives of Mavericks were at the board vote. Rab commented in an update this evening, “it was an eerily quiet end to three months of drama.”


But its not really over.

Yesterday and at today’s charter school pep rally in Tallahassee, well-funded charter school lobbies signaled they were targeting school boards like Palm Beach county’s for turning down charter schools.

“We need districts to follow the law,” said Cheri Shannon, president of the Florida Charter School Alliance.

Shannon said the districts have set up roadblocks to allowing charter schools to offer parents a choice from the public education path.

She said of 53 charter school applications that were submitted in the past year, school districts across Florida have approved three.

The politicians whom spoke at the pep rally frequently used the word, “choice,” to justify their advocacy for bills which seek to put more cash into the pockets of charter school operators. Local school boards – like Palm Beach county’s whom are elected to serve local interests – are chosing to reject charter schools. It appears that charter schools and their hand maidens in the Florida legislature desire choice for me but not for thee.

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