I keep seeing articles about elections influenced by out-of-state and out-of-district contributions.

Sometimes, as in Los Altos, California, and in New Orleans, the elections are for local school board.

Sometimes, as in Louisiana, the election is for state school board.

Sometimes, as in Indiana and Idaho, the election is for state superintendent.

Sometimes, the election is a ballot initiative, as in Georgia, which is voting on whether to give the Governor the authority to create a commission to authorize charter schools even if the local school board objects; and in Washington State, where a referendum would create one of the nation’s most expansive charter laws; or in Michigan, where money is pouring in to oppose an initiative to make collective bargaining a right.

In school district after school district, state after state, PAC money is being bundled to promote candidates and issues with the same agenda: anti-union, anti-teacher, anti-public education, pro-privatization.

Some of the names are familiar: Bill Gates (in Washington), Michael Bloomberg (in Louisiana), Alice Walton (in Georgia and Washington), Joel Klein (in New Orleans), the DeVos family (American Federation for Children) in Michigan, Eli Broad (in Louisiana), Michelle Rhee’s StudentsFirst (in Michigan and in many districts). Much of the spending is targeted by Democrats for EducationReform (DFER), the Wall Street hedge fund managers group.

This cannot be sheer coincidence. In most places, the amount of money coming from outside is unprecedented. In Louisiana, the spending on a state board race was a multiple of 12 times what was previously spent.

To the naked eye, this seems to be a concerted effort to orchestrate a privatization of public education.

Big money undermining local control, democracy, and public education.