Andy Spears, publisher of the Tennessee Education Report, explains how voucher forces finally passed a bill in Tennessee.

The FBI is investigating how one vote flipped at the last minute.

But no matter the outcome of these investigations, backers of school privatization can claim public policy victory. It took a new governor, an unscrupulous house speaker, and untold dark money dollars, but after six attempts, Tennessee now has a school voucher plan—one that could shift more than $300 million away from public schools in the state.

The lesson from Tennessee is clear: Advocates for public education face privatization forces with vast resources and patience. The fight is going to be a long one.

Funny thing about these FBI investigations. Years ago, the FBI swooped into Gulen offices in Ohio, carted away many boxes, and nothing more was heard from them.

And then there’s Ben Chavis of the Oakland (CA) American Indian Model Schools, the darling of conservatives, the guy who replaced all the American Indian students with Asians and got the state’s highest scores. He was arrested after a state audit found that he had diverted nearly $4 million to his and his wife’s bank account, much of it federal money. He recently got off with one year of probation, no punishment for his theft, because he had done such good work in education. Vielka MacFarlane, head of the Celerity charter chain in California, admitted embezzling $3.2 million and was sentenced to 30 months in jail. She dealt with state authorities, not federal ones. Maybe she was sentenced, and Chavis got off with only probation because his schools had higher test scores?