On February 15, San Francisco will hold a recall election for three members of its school board. Big contributions are pouring in from the pro-charter plutocrats.

The pro-recall campaign has collected nearly $2 million. The anti-recall campaign has raised a small fraction of that, about $30,000.

Arthur Rock, a California billionaire who has given many millions to Teach for America and charter schools, has given $399,500 to support the recall.

If you set aside the pandemic and the renaming of schools and look at the long term, one of the major issues facing San Francisco Unified School District, and other districts around the country, is the rise of charter schools.

Charter school proponents, led by the likes of Michael Bloomberg and Betsy DeVos, are in essence trying to privatize public education. They want to create a market system where parents get vouchers and can send their kids to private schools or public charters (which typically do not have unionized teachers), starving the public-school system of money.

We all know the outcome: The charters and private schools, which set their own admission policies, will take the students who have the most advantages and need the least help. The public schools will wind up having to educate, with far less money, the most vulnerable populations, who will wind up will lower-quality schools—and economic inequality will get worse, which is fine with the billionaires.

Rock is a big charter-school and voucher proponent.

Again, set aside the pandemic for a moment. The current members of the SF School Board who are facing a recall have been dubious, at best, about charter schools. That may mean a lot more to Rock and his pals that whether Lincoln High School gets a new name.

The Mayor has endorsed the recall. If the recall passes, she gets to choose the new members. If the recall succeeds, the path will open for more charter schools.