This post was written by a black parent in Massachusetts. Her son attends a charter school. She is worried about the “preschool-to-prison pipeline.”

She wrote:

“Because we may listen to the speeches of MLK and others like him yet never act on their wisdom or heed their warning, we are faced with a Charter School Expansion. One that is extremely questionable and controversial for good reason. The “CHAINS” schema should not be allowed to ooze into “urban” schools because CHAINS cannot be broken. And let’s face it; a charter is a ship. The last time we got on a Chartered ship we were forced into bondage!

“Look at Walmart’s impact on Mom and Pop stores. Same family, same rules, same game — they are big supporters of charter schools.

“I do not support CHARTER SCHOOL CHAINS whatsoever and neither does the NAACP or the Black Educators Alliance of Massachusetts.

“Why don’t we see the Charter School expansion in the burbs? Why don’t the “haves” want them? Have they not seen the value or heard of the “scholar’s pledge” and the no excuses drill em and kill em while you make sure they sit still em’s ? Or have they not observed the following snapshot: instead of teaching “Fox in Sox” by Dr. Seuss, the acceptable utterance is —“you better be wearing matching socks, Or you’ll go straight to the principal’s office, you little 5 year-old you!

“My son attends a Charter School, not a chain. It’s my best forced “choice”. The other option was homeschooling him – real talk…However, I have to work full-time to keep our little house out of the hands of the big bank so I could not pull it off.

“I want my son in a community in the midst of his peer group. I want him to be held accountable to high academic and social standards yet I will not allow his person-hood to be ignored. Therefore, I work with the school. Oft times, I feel resolution. Sometimes I wish someone would turn off the White( Noise, that is) and keep the light shining on the action steps that have to happen in order for his potential to be fully realized. Would I recommend his school to others? Yes, it’s a decent option But like any school, parents have to know how to advocate.

“I cannot find the “enrichment” that he deserves within this school “choice” context bc it’s inclusion. You get (1) size fits all instruction. There are no AP tracks or gifted education programs for the students in his school. However, there is a subsidized travel opportunity for “well-behaved” scholars. Well behaved as defined\filtered through the white female gaze and backed up by the white male authoritarian gaze… so he’s left out.”