Thursday, January 26, 2006

Public Schools Protecting Their Territory

A district here in Orange County has rejected a proposal for a charter school.

One of the reasons the district educrats gave for rejecting the charter is ""There is no evidence that there is a 'critical need' for the proposed charter school..."

As the Orange County Register editorializes (linked above): "...that argument misses the point of charter schools, which were created by the state Legislature in 1992 to provide choice for parents and students. And it is parents and students who determine the success or failure of a charter by attending it or shunning it."

The charter is appealing.

This is a great example of something discussed here earlier this week, as well as in the past: public schools don't want competition even within the framework of the taxpayer-funded public school system.

Here's another pro-charter editorial from the Register.

A related issue was discussed in the same paper's Ask the Teacher column yesterday. The principal at an Orange County middle school is refusing to allow teachers to write recommendation letters for students who wish to transfer to a high school in another district or to a private school. As the parent wrote: "Placentia-Yorba officials didn't want to enable a student to leave their district because they feel their district has high schools that provide equivalent/competing programs."

In other words, it's far more important to the principal to hang on to the child's body and the accompanying tax dollars than to work cooperatively with parents in their child's best interest, as determined by the parents. What matters to the principal is simply the school and its funding; education and parental rights are not considerations for such an educrat.


Blogger UGN said...

Yes, there isn't anything they care about more than the money they get for each body. Trying to keep someone from transferring out of the district is nothing. In my district we can't get rid of the most hideous trouble makers (who ruin the education of those unfortunate enough to have a class with them) because we lose money. If I didn't work for the district I would expose them for the frauds they are. If I were a parent with a child in that district I would be livid if I knew what shenanigans they put up with in our classrooms!

I am beginning to learn that of all the parties involved--the district, the union, and the teachers--only the teachers care about education.

9:23 PM  
Blogger Laura said...

It's a real shame that there is so much standing in the way of dedicated teachers such as yourself who really want to educate their students and help them succeed.

In particular there needs to be some sort of solution for classroom troublemakers. Oldest daughter's first year of Spanish was nearly ruined by such students -- one even got into a shoving match with the teacher! I don't see any answers for that problem coming any time soon, unfortunately, and it sounds like you don't either.

Take care -- Laura

9:42 AM  
Blogger UGN said...

I'm positive a ruler across the knuckles would do wonders.

5:19 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Laura, I've just seen some really bad things(to those us not lucky enough? to be Californians) about California public schools. see

Where do one person's rights end and another's begin

Teachers in San Leandro, who are of course school district employees and not free agents, are being forced to place in the class posters stating that the class is a safe place to be gay..

This tell me that citizens have lost control of their schools. Do you as a parent want this forced on any child? So what will you do?
Charter school, home school, move away from CAlifornia?? I'm interested to hear. They are after all YOUR SCHOOLS.

They don't BELONG to the government (the legislature here). Or the teachers' union. Or to anybody.

They're YOUR children.

12:55 PM  
Blogger Laura said...

Hi jng,

Thanks for your comments. Concerns such as you have highlighted here are one reason among many our three younger children are homeschooled. (Our oldest is a public high school senior graduating this year.) We were finally tired of the conflict with schools over issues such as parental authority and decided to focus our energy in a positive direction instead. One of our children had a great private school experience but that's not an affordable long-term alternative for many. I am seeing more and more aquaintances locally turn to homeschooling -- a family at the end of our street homeschools too! -- unfortunately there don't seem to be enough of us who care deeply about these issues to force the school boards/districts, etc., to turn some of these problematic areas around. Best wishes, Laura

1:11 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Laura, I am a big fan of homeschooling, too.

I guess American educational history interests me. Not the courses one finds in the university; I gave up on them long ago (2 grad schools worth). NO, the real story still to be found in the one room schoolhouse similar to where my grandfather taught. ( A one-roomed building also was my mother's favorite school.)

These schools had little conflict between state and parent over educating the child. A teacher was a figure of worth and respect.
There were no unions; my grandfather would be horrified at THAT idea.

Believe it or not, their BOOKS still exist. Yes, the McGuffey readers are one. Any used book sale (THE treasure place) will often produce a reader from the early 20c. I particularly like the books of the 30's,a time where Americans had nothing but themselves, faith, and grit. Even 50's readers are worthwhile.

These books tell us what those who came before us thought was important.

Thanks for your story. I agree that most teachers want to teach. And many parents want a real education for their children. But the ideal of public schooling, for all intents and purposes, is dormant or extinct in many areas of this country.

7:00 AM  
Blogger Laura said...

I love readers from the '40s and '50s! I've collected several (DOWN THE ROAD, UNDER THE ROOF, etc.). They're so colorful, and, as a friend of mine once said, "They make the world look like a good place to me." Best wishes, Laura

8:00 PM  

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