WHAT OTH­ERS ARE SAY­ING

Chicago Tribune (Sunday) - - EDITORIALS - In­grid Jac­ques, The Detroit News

Demo­cratic pres­i­den­tial con­tenders have given up any pre­tense that they value of­fer­ing fam­i­lies op­tions — in­clud­ing the many black and brown fam­i­lies who have ben­e­fited from char­ter schools in cities like Detroit. … At a re­cent event in At­lanta, El­iz­a­beth Warren raised the ire of some char­ter school en­thu­si­asts and made a cou­ple gaffes, in­clud­ing stat­ing her child went to a pub­lic school and didn’t at­tend a pri­vate school (which has been clearly doc­u­mented). She also bashed Michi­gan’s char­ter schools . ... “As you know, in Michi­gan, char­ter schools don’t have to meet the same stan­dards as pub­lic schools,” Warren said.

“First of all, char­ter schools ARE pub­lic schools,” coun­tered Dan Quisen­berry, pres­i­dent of the Michi­gan As­so­ci­a­tion of Pub­lic School Academies, in a state­ment. “And to be clear, char­ter schools not only have to meet all the same stan­dards as tra­di­tional pub­lic schools, they have to meet quite a few more.”

True. Char­ter pub­lic schools face all the same state man­dates as dis­trict pub­lic schools. And they have ad­di­tional over­sight built in with au­tho­riz­ers, most of which are pub­lic uni­ver­si­ties in Michi­gan, as well as char­ter school boards. And au­tho­riz­ers ac­tu­ally close down low-per­form­ing char­ters, some­thing that never hap­pens (but should) with fail­ing dis­trict schools. But par­ents are the big­gest de­ter­min­ing fac­tor be­hind a char­ter’s suc­cess or fail­ure. If they don’t like a school, they leave. …

Warren now joins a large list of can­di­dates who crit­i­cize char­ter schools and ed­u­ca­tion choice op­tions even though they sent their own chil­dren to pri­vate schools. That’s hypocrisy at its finest.

SCOTT OL­SON/GETTY

Demo­cratic pres­i­den­tial can­di­date Sen. El­iz­a­beth Warren speaks on Nov. 25 in Iowa.

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