Another Fine Day for “Innovative” Market-based Solutions

6:00 am in Economy, Education, Wall Street by Peterr

“Charter schools embrace innovative educational practices that encourage competition and hold teachers and administrators accountable for the academic achievement of their students.”

Mitt Romney, May 5, 2005

Fast forward to last Friday, and let’s see how those “innovative educational practices” are doing in practice.

From the St. Louis Post-Dispatch:

As they move to close down a network of St. Louis charter schools over the next several weeks, state education officials face a task as monumental and complicated as dismantling an entire school district.

As many as 3,800 children — or about 11 percent of those attending public schools in the city — must find new schools. Their records must be properly preserved and transferred. The school buildings they attended have to be scoured for equipment and materials paid for with federal funds. The 288 teachers and staff who work at the schools must have a better idea of their remaining pay and benefits. And that’s not counting the thousands of questions by parents who demand answers.


The Imagine schools [schools run by VA-based Imagine Schools, Inc.] had been on shaky ground all year.

Their scores on the state’s standardized tests were well below those of St. Louis Public Schools. The schools were deficit spending. Rent and administrative costs took dollars from the classroom to the for-profit management company that runs them.

A for-profit company, taking money for their profits? No one could have anticipated . . .

Read the rest of this entry →