The Democrat-controlled state House may vote on a bill today that would save public charter schools. The bill (SB 6194) passed the State Senate two months ago, and addresses the issues in the state Supreme Court’s unconstitutional ruling by establishing “privately operated charters as public schools outside the state’s ‘common school’ system, using lottery funds to pay for them.”
The Washington State Labor Council (WSLC) and the Washington Education Association (WEA) are working hard to ensure that the Democrats they so generously fund at campaign time vote against voter-approved public charter schools. One way the big labor groups are attempting to do that is by simply referring to charter schools as “private” schools that are taking money away from public schools. Take WSLC’s mouthpiece, The Stand, for example:
“Labor leaders reacted quickly to SB 6194’s surprise resurrection, calling on state representatives to vote against the bill. They said that legislators should not be diverting precious education funds to a handful of private schools.”
Of course, public charter schools are not private. To call charter schools “private” is simply Orwellian, a sign of their desperation. But, some House Democrats are already picking up the false argument and running with it.
Democrat state Representative Chris Reykdal, who needs the unions’ campaign cash in his race for State Superintendent of Public Instruction, tweeted a version of the argument. Reykdal:
Democrat Representative Mia Gregerson tweeted:
The fact that Democrats like Reykdal and Gregerson want to prevent over 1,300 current charter school students from continuing to attend their schools is what’s truly “sad”. The reality is that public charter schools offer underprivileged students an advantage they otherwise would not have in a system controlled by the WEA. As Shift has pointed out, two public charter schools in Tacoma reporting positive gains for students reflected in test scores serve as proof of the success of public charter schools.
It’s “sad” that Democrats like Reykdal and Gregerson, time and time again, place the special interests and their campaign donors ahead of what is proven to be an important part of our public school system – charter schools.