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Saturday, August 16, 2014

More and more Florida cities are pushing back against testing and charter schools. When will Jacksonville?

You know the super says all the time that he wants to bring students back from charter schools but then hires charter school executives and approves charter school after charter school even when there are opportunities to push back.

He and the entire board say there is too much testing going on too but then do noting to stem the tide.

Other cities are pushing back however. Other cities are pushing back against the privatization of our schools and the warping of education into nothing but churn and burn.

Look at what they are doing in Leesburg:

"Lee County School board members unanimously expressed their disdain for standardized testing at the school board meeting Tuesday evening, pledging to research the possibility of "opting out" the entire district from standardized testing.

"There needs to be a come-to-Jesus talk about these issues point blank," Chairman Tom Scott said.

Board member Don Donnie Armstrong said the district cannot afford to continue testing like it does now.

"A lot of our money is being poured out of this county to go to one company, I won't say names," he said. "But on this board or not on this board, I won't stand for it anymore."

Then Charter Schools USA has descended on Jacksonville like a plague of locust building one school before it was even approved. The boards response, a shrug of their collective shoulders before approving it.   Tampa however is fighting back.

From Scathing Purple Musings: But it is Elia’s presence on Scott’s transition team which is most poignant here. Also on that transition team was Charter Schools USA CEO Jonathan Hage. The two now find them facing off against in each other this morning over the future of four CSUSA facilities belonging to Hage in Elia’s district. Last night’s stunning report from WTSP reporter Noah Pransky that Elia had notified Hage that she would be closing three of his schools for a pattern of ongoing illegal oversight was indeed a show stopper.

I personally told the board that the members of the charter school boards weren't local, so much for local control, democracy and the concept of charter schools being parent teacher driven laboratories of innovation right and suggested they make a rule that at least have of the members of a charter school board be from the city. The DCPS board didn't care. Maybe since many have taken money from charter schools it is no surprise  

Tampa isn't the only city pushing back either:

From the Sun Sentinel:

Tamarac city officials have shot down a proposal to open a charter high school within the city.
At a recent City Commission meeting, officials went against staff's recommendation and voted unanimously against granting a special exception to open an alternative high school named International High School. The denial is in the backdrop of complaints by city residents that too many charter schools are opening in the city.

While our school board members ignore the problems and instead slap each other’s backs for taking money from privatizers and as our scores and grades sink lower and lower cities across the state are fighting back. 

It is a sad state of affairs.

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