Please open and read this action alert from NPE Action. 

We urge all concerned citizens, parents, and educators to contact your Senators and encourage them to cut the budget of the federal Charter Schools Program (“charter slush fund”) and use the $440 million currently budgeted for Title 1 and the nation’s neediest children.

NPE wrote a report on the federal Charter Schools Program and documented that one-third of the charter schools it funded between 2006-2014 either never opened or closed right after opening. The percentage of failed charters was even higher in states such as California and Louisiana. The CSP is rife with waste, fraud, and abuse. The failed federally-funded charters wasted nearly $1 billion over a six-year period studied.

Charter advocates attacked the report but no one has pointed out a single error of fact. They don’t like it because it shows in accurate detail that the federal Charter Schools Program is awash in waste, fraud and abuse.

Some of the most prominent members of the House of Representatives signed a letter criticizing the Department of Education’s failure to exercise oversight of the CSP and calling on Betsy DeVos to provide oversight of the program and to update the CSP database, which has not been updated since 2015.

The CSP currently is funded at $440 million. DeVos asked to raise it to $500 million. The Appropriations committee of the House of Representatives proposed a cut of $40 million, reducing it to $400 million.

Make no mistake. This is Betsy DeVos’s charter slush fund. This year, she gave $89 million to the richly-funded KIPP, and $116 million to IDEA, which plans to open 20 charter schools in El Paso, which will swamp the local public schools. She also gave nearly $10 million to Eva Moskowitz’s Success Academy chain, which is swimming in hedge fund money. The CSP is play money for DeVos. The whole program should be canceled. Charter schools are not needy. They do not need or deserve federal aid. Let the Waltons and Charles Koch and Bill Gates and Eli Broad and Reed Hastings and Michael Bloomberg pay for them.