Tuesday, September 08, 2015

Washington Supreme Court rules that charter schools are unconstitutional.

Courtesy of The Seattle Times:  

After nearly a year of deliberation, the state Supreme Court ruled 6-3 late Friday afternoon that charter schools are unconstitutional. 

The ruling — believed to be one of the first of its kind in the country — overturns the law voters narrowly approved in 2012 allowing publicly funded, but privately operated, schools.

In the ruling, Chief Justice Barbara Madsen wrote that charter schools aren’t “common schools” because they’re governed by appointed rather than elected boards. 

Therefore, “money that is dedicated to common schools is unconstitutionally diverted to charter schools,” Madsen wrote.

Education policy analyst and public school advocate Diane Ravitch had this to say about the ruling:  

This is a big win for parents and public schools.

I would agree and further state that I hope this is the first of many such decisions that put a stop to charter school programs that drain money and resources from the public schools while resisting any oversight from the same public whose tax money they are taking.

Listen I understand that there are some poorly run public schools in this country, and that parents really want alternatives.

But I also understand that there is a very determined anti-public education movement that uses charter schools and homeschooling as a way to undermine public schools, and their motives have far more to do with their religious faiths and ideology than they do with improving educational opportunities.

Make no mistake, public education and public school teachers are under constant fire in America and charter schools are the Trojan horse the opponents are using to get past our defenses.

(H/T Common Dreams)


  1. Anonymous4:54 AM

    I want to see a court rule against homeschooling which I fear is going to prove to have been a huge mistake. Just think when the homeschooled parents are teaching their homeschooled children. Yikes.

    1. Anonymous5:13 AM

      You and me both, Beaglemom. Yikes, indeed!

    2. Anonymous5:20 AM

      Beaglemom plees do us hoo whir homkooled a faver an rerite yor coment wit smolor wirds soz wee kin umdr stend yoo betor wee kent reed yer bigg wirds

    3. Anonymous6:05 AM

      They home school the kids and focus on the Bible teachings, then wonder why the kid can't get a job or has no social skills. Even the Duggars. Those kids (esp the girls) have little to know no "post "high school" education or trade training to get a job.

    4. fromthediagonal7:37 AM

      Public Schools "all the way", Please!

    5. Anonymous7:44 AM

      The scariest things are states where homeschoolers don't have any guidelines or oversight at all besides telling someone they're going to homeschool (Alaska is one such state).

    6. Anonymous10:57 AM

      Religion should be kept out of all schools is my opinion. Same as to our government issues!

  2. Leland5:28 AM

    This is only the first volley. You KNOW the anti-public schoolers and the fundies are not going to let this one go by silently.

    And you can't BET little missy SP is going to be screaming about the right to choose! And don't bother trying to explain the logic to her and her ilk, either, because they will simply refuse to accept it.

    Either that or they will DEMAND xtian classes like creationism or "intelligent design" or whatever the flavor of the month name is, in public schools, being too stupid to understand enough to recognize the true interpretation of the 1st Amendment. You know, the one that has been accepted for many, MANY decades (see https://www.au.org/resources/publications/prayer-and-the-public-schools. See especially paragraph 22).

    This last paragraph especially is the basic problem and is the very foundation of their push.

    I am very grateful the courts have begun (perhaps) to deny these fools their "logic".

  3. Anonymous5:50 AM

    The xtian taliban have been very active in the political process from the local school boards to the local government, and have gradually made thier way up the political chain until they now have at least 4 candidates running for president. They have hijacked the education system, women's health, the environment, the supreme court, the Senate and the House.

    Progressives have been asleep at the wheel, complacently thinking that there are no consequences to their apathy.

  4. Anonymous5:55 AM

    HOORAY X 1000!!! Now if only the evangelical academy I was forced to go to during my elementary and high school years should be made to pay for my past therapist bills!

    1. Anonymous2:38 PM

      Plus N raised to the power of infinity

  5. Anonymous6:13 AM

    My ignorant former daughter-in-law said "It only takes me five minutes a day to home school my four kids. I don't want to get up so early to get them to public school."

    Several years passed and of course the children could not read, do math etc. My son enrolled them in a private school where parent participation was required on a volunteer basis.

    They then were absorbed into a public school when they got up to speed but no public school could have invested the time and effort to make up for years of no education.

    The oldest is on the dean's list at a well known university and the other three are in a community college in a special program where they are accumulating credits to obtain their high school diploma because they have taken all of the advanced classes at their local high school.

    These four very bright youngsters were almost lost to a lazy, stupid woman's "faithful religious" demands, which is what she labeled her poor efforts at home schooling them.

    She is married now to someone else and it makes me happy to have her out of my life.

  6. Anonymous6:57 AM

    Remember that the Wasilla Wendigo at various times claimed to be homeschooling Bristol, Willow, and Piper. Remember the interview when she was showing Piper second-grade flashcards and Piper was still getting them wrong?

    1. Anonymous10:54 AM

      I seriously doubt that Palin was responsible at home schooling her kids! That would be very difficult work for her. I suggest it was never done as to Track, Bristol, Willow and Piper.

  7. WA Skeptic7:03 AM

    Since the 1960's and school desegregation, white southerners have taken their children out of public schools in order to keep them from sitting next to black kids. Then they got tired of paying for private schools as well as public schools, so they began pushing for charter schools.
    I've always thought that charter schools were an unacceptable intrusion of church and state.

    1. fromthediagonal8:16 AM

      Tell that to Jeb! Bush who, as Floriduh's twice governor pushed for all of this and got it. Dammit!

  8. Anonymous7:14 AM

    I totally agree with this decision. Charter schools have become elite schools and the public system has been downgraded horribly. Plus, by having charter schools it has created racial divide. Go into the charter schools and look!!!

  9. Anonymous7:16 AM

    Homeschooling is dumbing down our society. The religious - far right - tend to home school their kids. They become very inept as to society by that type training.

  10. Anonymous11:03 AM

    WA has advanced beyond the Pleistocene of 'deep red'. Time for other states follow our lead.

    IMO, charter schools have much more to do with huge money making possibilities for the Fundies than with any REAL religious convictions.

  11. Anonymous11:04 AM


    Michigan homeschooler in hot water! She's about to get thrown out of the legislature! With the representative that was innoculating her with is special sauce!


  12. Anonymous4:21 PM

    If you aren't familiar with John Kasich's charter school issues, please look into them. While you're at it, look into David Hansen, who resigned after he was found falsifying/scrubbing charter school records to make them look better. His wife, Beth Hansen? Why, she's Kasich's former chief of staff and now campaign manager, don'tcha know?

  13. Anonymous6:32 PM

    "I want to see a court rule against homeschooling which I fear is going to prove to have been a huge mistake"

    Are you also against private schooling? It seems to be that if preventing children from learning religion (which appears to be the motive of just about everyone against homeschooling) is what you're trying to do, then you'd have to be against private schools also. After all, there ARE private Christian academies.

    A question: if a liberal family lives in a small town and the only public schools have school boards that are run by evangelical Chrisitans (who you view as anti-science and anti-modern) what is that family to do? If they don't have the money for a secular private school or the money to move, homeschooling would be their only option. I'm just curious about how you'd react when the shoe is on the other foot.

  14. Anonymous3:50 AM

    Private schools don't receive taxpayer money. I have no problem with them. Children don't have to learn about Christianity in school; there are plenty of churches everywhere that can do that. I do think a course in world religions would be good for all. Public schools with evangelical school board members still have to conform to certain guidelines and if they don't, there is cause to file suit.


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