Mercedes Schneider has been reading the Senate bill to reauthorize the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (also known as No Child Left Behind). She has been reading it line by line. This is the fourth of five installments.
Mercedes finds that the statutory language is extremely supportive of “public” charter schools, which are public when they want the money but not “public” when it is time for an audit or accountability. The bill makes a few suggestions of reform, but none is strong enough to rein in the scandals that clutter the charter industry. If anything, the embrace of privately managed charters by Democrats shows the party’s abandonment of public education. We expect Republicans to advocate for school choice, but now Democrats are on the same side.