Thursday, January 7, 2016

Last Call For Chartering A Scam

I've long railed against charter schools as a massive sinkhole for giving billions in education money to private companies in order to weaken public schools to the point of destruction, but there's always been a racial component to the scam as well.  Charter schools are sold to black and Latino parents as a way to get their kids out of "failing public schools" when of course all it does is send money away from already strapped inner city schools.

In North Carolina, the extent of the charter schools scam is now becoming somewhat more evident.

A report showing the student population at state charter schools is wealthier and whiter than student bodies at traditional public schools was pulled Wednesday from the State Board of Education’s consideration. 
Lt. Gov. Dan Forest argued that the report, intended for the legislature and full of data on charter school enrollment, demographics and costs, was too negative. 
The report, to me, did not have a lot of positive things to say,” he said.

No kidding?

And of course since the report wasn't so nice, Forest pulls the report off the NC assembly's agenda.

More than 57 percent of students attending charter schools in the current school year are white, compared with traditional public schools’ 49.5 percent, the report said. 
The proportion of African-American students is about the same across both types of schools. A little more than 8 percent of charter students are Hispanic, while enrollment at traditional schools is more than 16 percent Hispanic. 
The report also references an April 2015 study by Helen Ladd, Charles Clotfelter and John Holbein of Duke University that showed little integration within individual charter schools. Student populations at individual charters, their study found, are predominantly white or predominantly minority. 
The state board sends a report on charters to the legislature each year, but this one comes as charter school enrollments are accelerating while growth of traditional public schools stagnates. 
Charter enrollment increased quickly after the state lifted the 100-school cap in 2011. About 41,200 students were enrolled in charters then. Last fall, nearly 82,000 students enrolled in one of 158 schools, according to the report. Overall, traditional public schools were expected to add about 3,700 students this year. 
Charter schools have a smaller proportion of low-income students, the report says. At charters last year, 36 percent of students were economically disadvantaged, compared with nearly 55 percent at traditional schools.
Read more here:

In other words, charter schools are quickly becoming a two-tiered education system at taxpayer expense.  And that's exactly how Republicans want it.

Read more here:

A Bunch Of Lazy Government Moochers

Guess which states depend on federal tax dollars the most?  If you said "Republican-controlled Southern and Midwestern states" then you get the brass ring.

That's Mississippi there at the most dependent state in the nation, 42.9% of the state's revenue comes from Washington DC.  Meanwhile, large blue states like California and New York?  Near the bottom.

In fact with the exceptions of Louisiana at number 2 (who just elected a Democrat in late November) and #6 Montana (Democrat Steve Bullock) all the top ten moocher states have GOP governors. Fiscal conservative John Kasich, running for the 2016 White House on a federal balanced budget? His own state is #19 on the list, getting more than a third of all revenue from the Feds.

Funny how that works.

Dispatches From Bevinstan, Con't

Gov. Matt Bevin's plan to flip the state 100% red like neighboring Indiana, Ohio, Tennessee and Missouri is proceeding apace, with the Governor having already gotten rid of two Kentucky House Democrats with new appointments to his cabinet and knocking the Democratic lead down to 50-46, he's now calling special elections for the seats in just nine weeks.

Gov. Matt Bevin has set March 8 as the date for critical special elections to fill four vacancies in the Kentucky House of Representatives. 
Those elections could tip the balance of power in the House, which will stand at 50 Democrats and 46 Republicans when the General Assembly convenes on Tuesday. 
During an impromptu news conference Monday at the Capitol, the Republican governor also said he plans to campaign hard in those elections to elect candidates who share his views. 
"I want conservative people. I want people in those seats that will represent the people of Kentucky. And I will do everything in my power to make sure that the people who I think embody the values that I was elected to represent are elected. I do think they'll be Republicans," Bevin said. 
Two of the four vacant House seats were caused by resignations of Democrats John Tilley, of Hopkinsville, and Tanya Pullin, of South Shore, who resigned to accept appointments from Bevin. The other two seats were made vacant by the resignations of two Republicans to accept jobs to which they were elected in November: Ryan Quarles, of Georgetown, who was elected agriculture commissioner, and Mike Harmon, of Danville who was elected auditor. 
In addition, two House Democrats - Jim Gooch of Providence and Denny Butler, of Louisville - switched to the Republican Party last month. 
"I think the tide is turning; the tide has already turned in some measure," Bevin said of the growing GOP numbers in the House. "And I think that's going to become increasingly evident in the days, weeks and years ahead."

A 50-50 tie in the Kentucky House would be something of a disaster, as there's no clear law as to who would be in control of the assembly.  It's entirely possible another legislator could flip parties to break the deadlock, but Bevin's made it clear that Democrats no longer have a place in the state. He's apparently drafted the state's most powerful Republican to help, too.

U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, after privately meeting Wednesday morning with Gov. Matt Bevin, said it’s inevitable that the Kentucky House will flip to Republican control and that he is working to make sure it happens. 
McConnell, a Louisville Republican, said he is working with state Rep. Jonathan Shell, R-Lancaster, to recruit Republican candidates for the four special House elections Bevin has called for March 8 to fill vacancies and for this year’s regular House elections, in which all 100 seats will be contested. 
Democrats now control the House with a 50-46 margin. If Republicans win all four House special elections, the political party makeup in the chamber will be an even 50-50. 
That has never happened before in Kentucky history, and Republicans are trying to wrest control of the state House for the first time since 1921. Republicans now control the state Senate and governor’s office. 
Both McConnell and Bevin said it is a matter of time before Republicans control the House. Bevin said he expects it to happen this year.

Read more here:

We'll see where it goes, but Bevin doesn't seem to be wasting any time in turning Kentucky into another basement dwelling Southern red state.  And in case of a 50-50 tie in the House, Bevin is already laying down markers that he's the decider.

Ironically, Alison Lundergan Grimes is still Secretary of State, and Steve Beshear's son Andy is now state AG, so we'll see how they weigh in.  I'm hoping they do, and soon.


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