Jack Covey is a teacher in Los Angeles and a frequent commenter on this blog. He recently watched a video of the keynote address of Jed Wallace, the CEO and President of the California Charter School Association. And he got very angry. He wrote the following comment following the video. After an hour, it had disappeared.
CCSA President and CEO Jed Wallace gives the Charter Conference Keynote





CCSA CEO Jed Wakkace started blathering about how his future lawyer teenage daughter and he were bemoaning the lack of “reasonable equality” in charter schools which co-locate on public school campuses.
He was trying to make this some kind of heart-warming charter-school-promoting story… and I went off in the COMMENTS section:

(first to COMMENT … see how long this stays before being removed)

Your daughter and you are kvetching about wanting “reasonably equivalent facilities” for your CCSSA charter schools, yet you simultaneously seem to be against “reasonable equality” in other  aspects of education.
To wit, parents whose children have been booted out (err… counseled out) of CCSA charter schools sued these charter school officials —- CCSA members, of course —- because, when giving them the boot, the school officials did not afford those students the same due process rights as those in the traditional public schools. They wanted a judge to compel California charter schools to make charter school students “reasonably equivalent” with public school students when it comes to due process in expulsions.
And what did CCSA’s lawyers do?
They argued in court that charter schools were “private entities” and, as such, had no legal obligation to provide any due process to students, making them the analogous equivalent of the “at will” teachers who teach at charter schools. If the charter school people don’t like you for whatever reason (extra cost, being troublesome in some way, low test scores, Special Ed., immigrant who’s brand new to learning English, homeless, foster care, etc.) .. you’re gone, baby, gone… and there’s nothing that the parent or the child can do about it.
Why don’t you chew on that sad legal and educational reality with your future lawyer daughter that you’re bragging so much about about in your speech?
Jed, if and when you and your daughter question your consciences in the dark hours of the night, and consider this specious charter school policy, will your daughter think or believe that you and the CCSA are the “good guys’, or that your are on “the side of the angels” when you and your CCSA legal team makes such a repellent legal argument?
In response to this, in Sacramento, a law was being considered that would compel charter schools to provide their students the same legal rights to a due process that their counterparts in the traditional public schools enjoy.
What did you and CCSA do?
True to form, you flooded the relevant politicians with lobbyists in an all-hands-on-deck maneuver to kill, or at least block this legislation, and it worked. It’s been temporarily tabled. … so as a result, you can throw as many kids in the metaphorical trash all you like, and not have to answer for it.
Way to go! You guys are all about the kids!
Regarding those students who are dumped by charter schools like so much trash, where do you think they end up? At the traditional public schools that you and the CCSA love to malign so much. I’m teaching three of these charter school dumpees myself right now, including one who, along with a her mother and siblings, lives a nomadic existence going from shelter to shelter… and you know what, Jed?
She shows up to my class every day feeling the little security she has in life, knowing full well that neither I nor my principal are going to kick her to curb when the issues and circumstances of her life manifest themselves — in being late for school, or in her acting out with bad behavior or her low test scores… or whatever.
In other words, when it comes to my moral obligations as an educator, I can sleep at night.
How about you?
How about your fellow charter school CEO’s in that audience?
How about those teachers who work in your charters and who do not fulfill these same moral obligations to students in the manner that my fellow public school teachers and I do?
Indeed, how DO YOU charter honchos sleep at night?
Oh, I know… on a bed full of money (I stole that from Don Draper — “Babylon” — SEASON ONE, MAD MEN).
Regarding this dual standard for due process that charters school officials’ claim for their schools, I recommend this article by Dr. Preston Green (posted on Jennifer “Edushyster” Berkshire’s blog) :

Signing Their Rights Away


PRESTON GREEN: “Charter advocates claims that charter schools are public schools because they are open to all, do not charge tuition, and do not have special entrance requirements.
“But what about student rights? State and federal courts have issued rulings suggesting that students attending California charter schools do not have the same due process rights as those enjoyed by public-school students.
“In Scott B. v. Board of Trustees of Orange County High School of Arts, a state appellate court found that charter schools were exempt from due process procedures that applied to public-school expulsions. In reaching this conclusion, the court observed that the state education code generally exempted charter schools from rules that applied to traditional public schools, and the expulsion statute was one of those rules.”