Saturday, October 9, 2010

The Secret of a Successful Charter School? No Secret!

The secret of running a “successful school” -- known by all “successful” private and parochial school administrators -- is very much the same as running a “successful” business. It is not necessarily superior teachers (technicians), superior curriculum (planning) or superior administration (management) -- although these all may help. Rather, it is quality control over the raw materials: the ability to turn away or get rid of those students not up to or who interfere with school procedures. It is also control of the evaluation processes or of the subsequent publicity.

Show me a charter school that is academically “successful,” and I’ll show you a charter school whose staff knows how to persuade, seduce, intimidate or coerce students (and their parents) to fall into line; and, which, blatantly or surreptitiously, rids itself of “problem” children. It is also a school which doesn’t wash its dirty linen in public.

There is no magic to Charter Schools, just less oversight to interfere with doing what is necessary to achieve school goals – or the personal agendas of the proprietors.

Running a school of any kind is often tough, thankless work; work with little economic yield in the short run. The appeal of charter schools to the entrepreneur is much reduced oversight by governmental agencies.

To examine these issues further, see Deregulation and Charter School Swindles

--- EGR

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