As you recall, CRPE's Robin Lake had invited us all (well, most of us) to come for a discussion over coffee today. I attended part of the discussion as did a couple of SPS parents, two administrators from other districts and a colleague of Ms. Lake's. I can't tell you what the discussion was about because I was asked not to.
I can tell you that it seems apparent that not everyone knows this initiative as well as you might think.
And, it certainly help me see that CRPE is not exactly neutral on this topic of charter schools.
But honestly, how could they be? A large portion of their research is about charters and how great they are and how to grow them. They are funded (and have been funded) for years by the Gates Foundation which also loves charters.
I can only say that while I would never challenge their expertise about charters, I'm not sure I would believe everything they say is neutral or balanced. In the coming months as we battle over this initiative, I can see where a media outlet might go to them, thinking they are an academic institution and would give objective statements but at least you'll know what their focus is and who funds it.