Washington, D.C. School Accountability Report: 5 new charter schools to come | More closures | and more

In the Public Interest’s pick of recent news about the ongoing effort to privatize public education in the District.

Jeremy Mohler
Jun 10 · 2 min read

Too many seats. In May, the D.C. Public Charter School Board (PCSB) approved five new charter schools to open for the 2020–2021 academic year. Paul Kihn, deputy mayor for education, wrote a memo to the charter board ahead of its vote expressing concerns about adding charter campuses, saying they “are competing for a relatively limited number of high school aged students.” The Washington Post

Monument Academy to shut down. The board of Monument Academy Public Charter School, a Northeast boarding school that educates middle-school students who have extensive learning and emotional needs, has voted to recommend that the school close. The Washington Post

“Where are these kids going to go?” When National Collegiate Prep closes at the end of the 2020–21 school year, 276 students will be uprooted and left scrambling for other educational options. That will also make it at least the 44th charter school shuttered since 2009. One-in-four of the District’s charter schools have been shut down for failing to meet academic standards or financial problems. WUSA9

“The charter school movement is in trouble.” Jack Schnieder, assistant professor of education at the University of Massachusetts at Lowell, asks, “Charters were supposed to save public education. Why are Americans turning against them?” The Washington Post

From outside the District…Basis is paying teachers with parent donations. Even though Basis Charter Schools Inc. gets more in basic per-pupil funding in Arizona than the state’s traditional public schools, its teachers’ salaries are, on average, thousands of dollars less than those of traditional public school teachers. How? It subsidizes those salaries by asking parents to make donations. Basis Scottsdale, for example, asks for at least $1,500 per child each year. AZCentral

In the Public Interest

In the Public Interest is a nonprofit that advocates for democratic control of public goods and services.

Jeremy Mohler

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DC-based writer and meditation teacher. jeremymohler.blog and inthepublicinterest.org. Sign up for my email list: jeremymohler.blog/signup

In the Public Interest

In the Public Interest is a nonprofit that advocates for democratic control of public goods and services.