Christine Langhoff, retired teacher in Massachusetts, writes:


The big news of the week of course, was the ruling by the MA Supreme Judicial Court that the cap on charters is constitutional. Coverage in the putative newspaper of record, The Boston Globe, sought to portray the decision as public schools and teachers hating on charters.

“The court fight escalated the long-running battle over charter schools, which are controversial because they do not have to be unionized, operate independently of local school districts, and are given more flexibility to set their curriculums, budgets, and staffing levels.”

Importantly, as Professor Cunningham points out, John Henry, The Globe’s owner and publisher, is Klarman’s business partner. Klarman, the billionaire hedge funder, contributed $3 million to the Yes on Question 2 faction. He also holds some $92 million in Puerto Rico’s debt, which bodes ill for the islanders as they face the impending, sweeping charterization of their public schools.

By contrast, Clive McFarlane, writing in the Worcester Telegram, unafflicted by allegiances among business partners, had this perspective:

“Mr. Nicolette (executive director of the Massachusetts Charter Public School Association) and other supporters will continue to point to the charter schools that are doing well, while highlighting the traditional public schools that are struggling.

But they won’t tell you about the attrition rates of students attending charter schools, that the top 11 and 17 of the top 20 schools statewide with the highest attrition rates are charter schools.

They won’t tell you that the top seven schools with the highest dropout rates (ranging from 21 percent to 54 percent) in the state are charter schools.

They won’t tell you that the top nine schools in the state with the highest churn rate (the percent of students leaving and arriving during the school year) are charter schools.”

The interests of the elite make it clear that though decisive victories against the charter industry have been won, the proponents are not about to walk away.
So, though we’ve won three times in the struggle to keep our “best in the nation” public schools here in Massachusetts, don’t count the charteristas out. Seems there’s a lot of money riding on them.