Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Another giant sucking sound

Thanks to the ears-to-the-ground, all around on-the-ball folks at Media Transparency, we have some more proof that charter schools, as well as private schools voucher schemes, are giant rat holes. From the linked NYT story:

WASHINGTON, Aug. 22 — Fourth graders in traditional public schools did significantly better in reading and math than comparable children attending charter schools, according to a report released on Tuesday by the Federal Education Department.

You know it just had to just about kill the current bunch in charge of the Department of Education to release this report. In fact, they don’t want to do it anymore:

Even as the federal commissioner of education statistics, Mark S. Schneider, released the report, he said the agency should no longer put its official imprimatur on research comparing charter with public schools and leave such studies to independent researchers.

Their minds are made up and they don’t want to be confused with the facts! Like most things in the Bush administration, educational policy just ought to be faith-based.

In addition to having a little fun at conservatives’ expense, Spot wants to mention this because it has implications for the DFL Fifth Congressional District primary coming up in September. What you say?

Spot knows that one of the candidates is a charter school aficionado: Ember Reichgott Junge. That’s right, student council president, Up with People Ember. In fact, Ember seems to be getting a lot of support from the charter school crowd, AKA Republicans. In rummaging around for some links, Spot sees that Minnesota Campaign Report has the same story.

Spot has been working on some charter school data from the Minnesota Department of Education. We pay a boatload of money for these flights of fancy. Expect to hear more about it from Spot in coming days.

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