Separate and Unequal


Bill Turque at the Post recently wrote an article about a charter school that was slated for closure, but then officials changed their mind at the last minute and the school is to remain open. The reasoning, we are told, is that the charter school, Community Academy, operates 6 campuses, and that it wouldn't be fair to revoke the charter just because one campus has an abysmal testing record where only "25 percent of third graders were proficient or advanced in reading on the 2011 DC CAS. Rand [the particular campus] scored only 19.5 percent on the charter board’s new performance management system, just inside the 20 percent threshold that can trigger closure proceedings." You can follow this link to read more: Charter left open

One question: why?

We can apply this same logic to DCPS and say that public schools are one cohesive unit, so why are individual "failing" schools being closed? We still have high performing ones around.

So why do charters get special treatment?

In fact, if the city government accepts the IFF report's (flawed) recommendations, then 38 more schools will be closed. Here is the breakdown by ward:

Ward 1
Bruce Monroe @ Parkview Elementary School
Cardozo High School

Ward 4
Macfarland Middle
Raymond Educational Campus
Brightwood Educational Campus
Roosevelt High School

Ward 5
Noyes Educational Campus
Burroughs Educational Campus
Browne Educational Campus
Spingarn High School
Wheatley Ed. Campus

Ward 7
Plummer Elementary
Beers Elementary
Randle Highlands Elementary School
Aiton Elementary School
Drew Elementary School
Kelly Miller Middle School
Woodson High School
CW Harris Elementary School
Davis Elementary School
Nalle Elementary School

Ward 8
Orr Elementary School
Ballou High School
Hart Middle School
Hendley Elementary School
King Elementary School
Leckie Elementary School
Anacostia High School
Kramer Middle School
Garfield Elementary School
Stanton Elementary School
Johnson Middle School
Malcolm X Elementary School
Ferebee-Hope Elementary School
Terrell/McGogney Elementary School,
Patterson Elementary School
Simon Elementary

Notice there are none in Wards 2 or 3. Take a guess how many are in improvised neighborhoods or serve minority students? That's right, ALL OF THEM!!! And another thing, IFF has ties to the charter school movement and besides recommending that these schools be shut down, IFF also recommended that perhaps they be turned over to charter management.

Can anyone say conflict of interest?

Has charter management worked at Roosevelt, Dunbar, or Anacostia? In fact, Roosevelt and Anacostia are recommended for closure!

Another thing is Chancellor Henderson's recent request to grant charters. Is this linked to the results of the IFF study?

Are charter's really that much better? Or is there something else in the works, which is why even a failing charter school gets special treatment?


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