Veteran educator Mike Deshotels writes here about Louisiana’s relentless drive to privatize public education. At a recent meeting of the state board of education, packed with Bobby Jindal extremists thanks to out-of-state money in the last board election, the board continued to approve more charters to replace failing charters.
When questioned, State Superintendent John White “had his well funded astro-turf organizations primed to make the usual appeals to the Board for more choice (privatization) even when their arguments were non-sensical. For example, in the debate over the acceptance of a whole new batch of charter schools for the failed Baton Rouge Recovery District, parents who had been brought in by BAEO and Stand for Children, explained how their children had been poorly served by the previous charter schools in the BR Recovery District and gave this as a reason why BESE should continue to approve more charters!!! Some of us in the audience scratched our heads at this twisted logic and then again when a teacher from one of the defunct charters said that it was time that BESE added stability to the staffing of the schools in the RSD by approving the new batch of charters. This is how it went. Beebie and Hill just kept asking “how does this make sense?” But the votes on our rubber stamp BESE kept going down 9 to 2 for whatever the privatizers wanted.