California has one of the worst charter laws in  the nation. Anyone can open a charter.districts can authorize charters in other districts. Read Carol Burris report “Charters and Consequence” to learn just how bad things are. It is jaw-dropping.

There is hope for change, as Bill Raden reports in “Capital & Main.

 

“California’s charter school sector moved one step closer to accountability on Tuesday when Governor Gavin Newsomofficially asked State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Thurmond to assemble an expert panel to assess the effect on public school district finances by unregulated charter school expansion. Thurmond’s panel represents the first time California will have conducted any kind of in-depth analysis of charter impacts on public education since the state passed its original charter legislation in 1992. It has until July 1 to deliver its findings.

“Meanwhile, the race for L.A Unified’s March 5 school boardspecial election entered its final stretch this week as candidates vied to fill out the term of pro-charter Board District 5 member Ref Rodriguez, who resigned in July following a felony conviction for campaign money laundering. At stake is the political balance of a split board as L.A. schools superintendent Austin Beutnerprepares to roll out a controversial portfolio district reorganization plan.

“Beutner’s biggest fear has to be an outright March 5 win by former two-time BD 5 representative Jackie Goldberg, a progressive L.A. icon who is fourth in campaign contributions but is expected to benefit from her broad name recognition and the pivotal endorsement (and financial might) of United Teachers Los Angeles. Nipping at her heels as far as labor support goes is money leader Heather Repenning, a former aide to Mayor Eric Garcetti. Repenning comes to the race with the backing of Service Employees International Union Local 99, which represents school cafeteria workers, janitors and teachers’ aides, and has already chipped in over $400K in independent expenditure money. The contest for the charter vote — and the endorsement of California Charter School Association Advocates, which announced it is waiting to see who makes it to a runoff — is between former charter school executive Allison Bajracharya and Huntington Park City Councilmember Graciela Ortiz, who are respectively number two and three in total campaign contributions.”