A reader points out that the U.S. Department of Education has the following program information on its website:

“The U.S. Department of Education’s Charter Schools Program (CSP) has invested more than $255 million in charter schools this year. The purpose of the program is to increase financial support for the startup and expansion of these public schools, build a better national understanding of the public charter school model, and increase the number of high-quality public charter schools across the nation. More information about the Charter Schools Program is available from the U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Innovation and Improvement here.”

Why is the DOE spending $255 million on privately managed charters that are free to exclude low-performing students or students with high needs? Why does it support a sector that is more racially segregated than community schools in the same district?

Charter schools are not public schools. Charter schools are run by private management. Most charter schools do not have a parent association. Charter schools do not get better test scores than public schools, on average.