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Thursday, October 18, 2012

On-Line Debate on 1240 Today at Noon

The Seattle Times is having a live chat at noon today, Thursday, Oct. 17th, with Professor Wayne Au, from UW Bothell, opposing I-1240 and Shannon Campion, from some organization supporting 1240.

About Professor Au:

He is an assistant professor in the education program at the University of Washington, Bothell. He is an editor for the progressive education magazine, Rethinking Schools. He is the author of numerous books, chapters, and articles, and his research focuses on issues of equality and justice in education.

Our moderators are Times reporter Linda Shaw and myself. Feel free to send questions in advance to lshaw@seattletimes.com or jbalter@seattletimes.com.

Get those questions in!

18 comments:

joanna said...

I didn't see this in time to participate. I think that it is interesting that the "Times" has not yet covered the Board vote to oppose I-1240 last night. Is it not news?

Anonymous said...

The times did cover a bit. It was a four paragraph bit in the "Around the Northwest" section in this morning's paper.

Had the board voted pro the charter initiative, I am sure the Times would've found room for a much larger story. Maybe they even would've had room for a full-page ad.

-sasquatch

Anonymous said...

Joanna, it's going on right now. and you can submit questions live.

-no 1240

Anonymous said...

Think I am voting charter.

Long gone

Anonymous said...

"If I say it enough, if I repeat it enough times, it must be true! Regardless of lack of specific detail and evidence to the contrary."

(I am not)
Shannon Campion

Patrick said...

It was a four paragraph bit in the "Around the Northwest" section in this morning's paper.

If the vote was pro charter, it would have been page 1 above the fold!

Anonymous said...

"I am not being paid by the 1240 campaign, I am here as a volunteer." - Shannon Campion

Except for the fact that the question she responded to was whether she was being paid by an organization officially backing 1240...

-Pants on fire!

Maureen said...

Shannon Campion kept saying that the law was based on that of the "best states." Has anyone ever heard which states she means? I tried to ask during the debate, but my questions kept going to moderation. At one point, Linda Shaw said something about only 50% of charters in NY being successful so I wanted to see if the law is modeled on the one in NY.

Dorothy Neville said...

My questions kept going to moderation as well! I have heard from the YES side that the states with strong charter laws that they based this on include Colorado, New York and two others whose names escape me right now.

My related question (that got sunk in moderation)was that given that I1240 has whole sections simply cut and pasted from I729 and R55, exactly what parts of the initiative were written with the "strong laws" in mind?

hschinske said...

The "best" states? Is that like the "best" families? Ooh, we don't want to take our charter school legislation from any trashy states, no way!

Helen Schinske

SPS Dad/Spouse of Educator said...

i viewed all the comments and Shannon was really stuck with saying the same thing multiple times, sounded like a Politician.
one of the issue i would like to have a yes- on -I1240 person respond to or if anyone knows. if a student/parent at a charter doesnt follow through with the agreement they will surely have to sign. then what happens, they go to PS. SO this is the cherry pick i see. The PS cannot force parents to follow their guidelines and if they dont they cant get removed from school unless they are expelled.
from what i have read, there are charters who have very strict rules for students/parents and if they are not followed they can terminate their arrangement. i see this a cherry picking. Am i wrong?

Charlie Mas said...

I don't think a Washington charter can require a family to sign an agreement. The law requires them to set no enrollment requirement and a signed agreement would be a requirement.

Unknown said...

Maureen, that statement is based on the assessment of a charter organization. Of course, they are going to say it's a GREAT charter law. (Hilariously, I-1240 gets dinged for having a cap on the number of charters.) It does have the most harsh conversion charter in the country - it has that going for it.

SPS Dad, they generally don't have you sign an agreement but there is something to read and if you enroll, you agree this is what you want. And, if you don't follow it, your child will be exited.

As well, they seem to do a great job at "counseling out" Special Ed, ELL and homeless students.

They CAN have an application form to require but it doesn't mean you can't enroll. They just want the application filled out. One of the best charters in the country, Preuss in San Diego, has a 15-page one that says at the top "we can't help you fill out this application."

Unknown said...

Maureen, that statement is based on the assessment of a charter organization. Of course, they are going to say it's a GREAT charter law. (Hilariously, I-1240 gets dinged for having a cap on the number of charters.) It does have the most harsh conversion charter in the country - it has that going for it.

SPS Dad, they generally don't have you sign an agreement but there is something to read and if you enroll, you agree this is what you want. And, if you don't follow it, your child will be exited.

As well, they seem to do a great job at "counseling out" Special Ed, ELL and homeless students.

They CAN have an application form to require but it doesn't mean you can't enroll. They just want the application filled out. One of the best charters in the country, Preuss in San Diego, has a 15-page one that says at the top "we can't help you fill out this application."

Jan said...

Charlie -- I think Melissa is right on how they will handle the "contract" issue. They will simply give you a statement of how they run their school -- what their policies are, and make it clear that if you enroll, they are taking the position that you understand and agree to them. If that isn't snarky enough -- they may go farther and warn you that noncompliance will be taken out on your kid. "We at RightWingHotAir Charter have noted from our many years educating children that children whose families choose not to support them by following our behavioral guidelines, or who cannot make the commitment to their child's success by agreeing to [fill in the blank] often are less successful and happy at RightWingHotAir than our other students, and we encourage you to thoughtfully review these policies and rules before deciding to enroll your child with us."

When your child has been sent home for failing to bring in homework, or you have been fined because their shoes were untied, or they didn't say "sir" when speaking to their principal, or their uniform shirt was rumpled -- and you are told they can't make up the work from time they have missed in detention, so they will now be failing (or you could just leave, of course), the unsigned policies work just as well as a contract. Who can you call to complain?

Maureen said...

Having skimmed some of the CAS applications, some of them want to institute parent contracts. Some Alt schools (including Nova)"require" that people tour and sign something. When I was a Volunteer Coordinator at an Alt, I asked our principal if we could request that (not require). It didn't happen.

Melissa, I get that, I just want to know which states they say are great so we can specifically point out that charters in those 'good' states aren't doing well either. (If they don't name the states, they can pretend like all 17% of the 'good' schools are in those 'good' states.)

Anonymous said...

Maureen - if they told us which states' laws were the "strong" ones that 1240 is modeled on then, you're right, that would blow their cover - because all those "great/strong" charters helping all those kids excel would be found not to exist (except for a couple of anecdotes).

Oompah

Anonymous said...

Charlie says "I don't think a Washington charter can require a family to sign an agreement. The law requires them to set no enrollment requirement and a signed agreement would be a requirement."

Just because the law says it, doesn't mean it won't happen. Charters are notoriously slimy in the way they get around "laws". They "recommend" a donation of $1200 a semester (that'd be the Great Hearts charter chain out of AZ), they "recommend" that parents spend 20 hrs per week volunteering in the school, they "recommend" that a child go to a public school so they can receive the appropriate services.... All of these "recommendations" are against the law in most states, but enforcement rarely happens. They can have an application process but call it "registration". They can choose to hand out the "registration" papers at a particular location (like a ward house or a country club) or on a particular date. If you don't think that will happen in WA with 1240, then I've got a lovely piece of land in the middle of a delightful body of water to sell you.

CT