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  • 01-01-2001 12:00 AM

    2011 Senate Bill 618 (Eliminate charter school cap)

    Introduced in the Senate on September 7, 2011

    Click here to view bill details.

  • 09-13-2011 1:49 AM In reply to

    • thejmfc
    • Top 75 Contributor
      Male
    • Joined on 05-22-2009
    • Jenison

    Re: 2011 Senate Bill 618 (Eliminate charter school cap; allow “privatized” teachers )

    This might be my favorite bill in quite some time.  More charter schools, allow schools to outsource teaching to non-union companies... The MEA will be in a froth over this one, but as usual, that's just an indication that it's a pretty good idea. 

  • 09-13-2011 10:23 PM In reply to

    Re: 2011 Senate Bill 618 (Eliminate charter school cap; allow “privatized” teachers )

     Another idiot bill introduced by someone who doesn't have a clue. I've had many students who have moved into my district from charter schools. I can count on one hand the number who were at grade level when they got to me. Charter schools are not the wonderful entities that the general public believes them to be. The "privatized" teachers idea is yet another attempt to force teachers to not join unions. Why on earth would any qualified teacher want to work for a private company that will pay them next to nothing, give them no voice in classroom conditions and treat them like servants?

  • 09-22-2011 7:47 AM In reply to

    Re: 2011 Senate Bill 618 (Eliminate charter school cap; allow “privatized” teachers )

     

    I fully support removing barriers to choice in education.  Charter schools offer an opportunity which cannot be matched with attempts to increase schools of choice.  In our competitive environment children require platforms tailored to specific attributes - including a cyber-option to complete their education.  Removing caps is not limited in benefit to the students; it also enriches the lives of families, educators, and communities as a whole. 

     It appears the only drawback would be a potential drop in union membership, as this remains a choice in the charter arena. Growth in the educational system should not be beholden to MEA or any other labor union.  The strong union opposition motivated in carrying out political agendas that solely benefit the labor organization, rather than carry out the mere premise of a union - to protect is members.

     http://www.mackinac.org/15720#3890

     

    Filed under: , , ,
  • 09-22-2011 9:17 AM In reply to

    • gypsy
    • Top 10 Contributor
    • Joined on 03-19-2009

    Re: 2011 Senate Bill 618 (Eliminate charter school cap; allow “privatized” teachers )

    Privatizing teachers is nothing more than an attempt to take away the political clout of the MEA and any other teachers union. This would not save the taxpayer money, since a company employing these privatized teachers would need to make a profit. So teachers would make less, and taxpayers would pay the same or more. Probably the quality of teachers would decline, since they'd be working for less. So why do it? See first sentence.

  • 09-29-2011 7:52 PM In reply to

    Re: 2011 Senate Bill 618 (Eliminate charter school cap; allow “privatized” teachers )

     This bill is a terrible idea. The district I work in already outsources our substitute teachers through a private company. It has been a disaster. The subs I am stuck with can barely speak English let alone attempt to teach reading. I've actually had one tell a student that I had finally gotten to a point where he was beginning to understand regrouping that it was all wrong. This sub then taught that student to calculate regrouping problems completely wrong. I could go on for hours about these awful subs. Can anyone really think that outsourcing teachers is going to improve instruction?

  • 10-01-2011 9:06 AM In reply to

    Re: 2011 Senate Bill 618 (Eliminate charter school cap; allow “privatized” teachers )

     We have privatized our custodians, bus drivers, cafeteria workers, secretaries and now bill SB 618 and SB 624 allows school districts to privatize teachers !! Please! I have seen the decline in work ethic and performance...nothing to gain for our kids by doing this. Seems that people who know nothing about kids & education are the ones making these huge decisions.....Please vote NO!

     

  • 10-06-2011 9:25 PM In reply to

    Re: 2011 Senate Bill 618 (Eliminate charter school cap; allow “privatized” teachers )

    Senators Pappageorge, Rocca, Kahn, Jansen, Kowall, Schuitmaker, Nofs, Casperson, Green, Caswell, Colbeck, Marleau, Brandenburg, Robertson, Moolenaar, Booher, Walker, Proos, Emmons, Hildenbrand, Meekhof, Richardville and Hansen, under their constitutional right of protest (Art. 4, Sec. 18), protested against the adoption of the amendment offered by Senator Anderson to Senate Bill No. 618.
    Senators Pappageorge and Rocca moved that the statements they made during the discussion of the amendment be printed as their reasons for voting “no.”
    The motion prevailed.
    Senator Pappageorge’s statement is as follows:
    You know, we got to stop characterizing this as one side is against bullying and the other side isn’t. That is absolutely false. There are two bullying bills on the floor. One wants to specifically identify a list of things that are called bullying. The other bill says any bullying is wrong. Now to get up and imply that there is only one bill on the floor is wrong. It is misleading.
    So lets’ step up and talk about the difference between those two bills and not imply there is only one bill out there because that is not the honest way to proceed on this thing. So those of you who believe the Senator from the 6th District has the right answer, well, fine. There is a bunch of us who think that Senator Jones’ bill is a better one. So let’s get together and talk about that, and stop trying to beat up the side that doesn’t like your bill, Senator from the 6th District.

  • 10-06-2011 9:26 PM In reply to

    Re: 2011 Senate Bill 618 (Eliminate charter school cap; allow “privatized” teachers )

    Senator Rocca’s first statement, in which Senators Kahn, Jansen, Kowall, Schuitmaker, Nofs, Casperson, Pappageorge, Green, Caswell, Colbeck, Marleau, Brandenburg, Robertson, Moolenaar, Booher, Walker, Proos, Emmons, Hildenbrand, Meekhof, Richardville and Hansen concurred, is as follows:
    I would just like to clarify the issue of enumeration versus nonenumeration. Frankly, I am stunned so many of my colleagues with all the very confident and able legal help we have in this chamber haven’t been able to inform themselves on this issue. When you enumerate in law, you exclude everybody who is not included in that enumeration. Anybody who is advocating for enumeration may not understand this, but they are advocating that anybody who is not included in that enumeration does not get protection under law. That is why Senator Jones’ bill, which does not have enumeration, is a good idea because it includes every child—literally includes every child—protects them all, does not make a distinction between who gets protected and who doesn’t.
    This is why when I hear my colleagues on the other side of the aisle, with whom I have repeatedly worked in good faith, make, frankly, hateful comments about people on this side of the aisle, saying, “They want to see children bullied. They want to see children committing suicide,” it is beneath contempt, frankly.
    Senator Jones’ bill, the one that does not have enumeration, is the only policy that protects every child. By enumerating, you literally exclude children, and by law, say it’s okay to discriminate against some to bully some but not others. That is why I am voting against this amendment.

  • 10-06-2011 9:26 PM In reply to

    Re: 2011 Senate Bill 618 (Eliminate charter school cap; allow “privatized” teachers )

    Senator Rocca’s second statement, in which Senators Kahn, Jansen, Kowall, Schuitmaker, Nofs, Casperson, Pappageorge, Green, Caswell, Colbeck, Marleau, Brandenburg, Robertson, Moolenaar, Booher, Walker, Proos, Emmons, Hildenbrand, Meekhof, Richardville and Hansen concurred, is as follows:
    When you express one, you exclude the others—fundamental, basic principle of statutory construction and interpretation. Ask your attorneys about this. When you express one, you exclude the others. This is a fundamental principle that anybody who has served in the Legislature for several years should understand because we are actually responsible for the content of our legislation.
    I fully support protecting children. That is why I support Senator Jones’ bill, and we should be moving it. For anybody to claim my intent is that we protect everyone, when the literal language of their legislation excludes some, it is simply disingenuous.

  • 10-06-2011 9:28 PM In reply to

    Re: 2011 Senate Bill 618 (Eliminate charter school cap; allow “privatized” teachers )

    Senators Hopgood, Hunter, Whitmer, Gleason, Smith, Anderson, Hood, Johnson, Bieda, Gregory, Young and Warren, under their constitutional right of protest (Art. 4, Sec. 18), protested against the passage of Senate Bill No. 618.
    Senators Hopgood, Johnson, Gregory and Warren moved that the statements they made during the discussion of the bill be printed as their reasons for voting “no.”
    The motion prevailed.
    Senator Hopgood’s statement, in which Senators Hunter, Whitmer, Gleason, Smith, Anderson, Hood, Johnson, Bieda, Gregory, Young and Warren concurred, is as follows:
    I rise today to speak in opposition to Senate Bill No. 618. I appreciate the remarks from the previous speaker. I think that we have been through this charter school experience for a number of years. It’s been an interesting conversation, it has been an interesting debate, and it is interesting policy. I think that way back when we had this debate about whether charter schools were good or bad, the problem is when we did that legislation back then, we set the bar a little bit too low. Without having a real conversation on how we raise that bar and how we set that bar a little bit higher, we are really missing the boat.

    The previous speaker said this is an idea that can touch all of our students, but that is not going to happen and that is the problem. When we talked about charter schools in the early years and we talked about the creativity and the innovation, we talked about performance. But we also talked about this idea that they were going to help change the landscape and reform the education system in all of our districts for all of our kids. We have set that aside. That is kind of the troubling aspect of this legislation. We have set that whole idea aside that this can be a tool for reform for the rest of our education system. In fact, we have protected our charter schools from some of the scrutiny that we talked about before, including the basic public disclosure stuff, the conflict of interest, and performance. We haven’t focused enough on quality.
    The experience has been that we have favored profit-making. We favored the charter school experience that is going to make profit off of our tax dollars and off of our kids’ education. That is part of what I am trying to talk about in terms to why I am vigorously opposed to this legislation. We are going to have more of the mediocre experience. We are not raising the bar, and as has been mentioned previously, we are absolutely No. 1 in terms of for-profit charter schools across the country. In Michigan, that is what we are good at—the for-profit charter school experience. I’m not saying that is good or bad, but the performance isn’t there. We are not doing better than the other schools. So all we are doing is subsidizing these for-profit ventures and diverting scarce resources from our neighborhood, locally-governed public schools that have to take every kid who shows up at the door.
    This is, once again, on the heels of taking $1 billion out of our schools earlier in the year. What kind of priorities are we looking at here? As a policymaker, as a lawmaker, my concern is not just the kids in the charter schools, but what is the experience for all of our kids? What is the impact on our public education system from a wider angle? This bill doesn’t move the needle at all. It moves us back. For those reasons, I’m voting “no.” I urge my colleagues to vote “no” as well.

  • 10-06-2011 9:29 PM In reply to

    Re: 2011 Senate Bill 618 (Eliminate charter school cap; allow “privatized” teachers )

    Senator Johnson’s statement, in which Senators Bieda, Whitmer, Gleason and Hunter concurred, is as follows:
    In 2009, Mr. President, we in the Michigan Legislature reformed our educational system. When I say we, I don’t mean one person or one party. I was proud to work in a bipartisan fashion with both Republicans and Democrats on implementing policies that were results-driven, success-based, and child-focused.
    We worked with the then House Education Committee Chairman Tim Melton from Pontiac, then Senate Minority Floor Leader Buzz Thomas from Detroit, Senate Education Committee Chairman Wayne Kuipers from Holland, as well as others from both sides of the aisle. We researched, combing through volumes of reports, data and statistics. We consulted, with education and administrative experts from around the country. We visited, schools in Virginia, Washington, D.C., and had conferences in Chicago and elsewhere around the nation. We did our homework.
    We incorporated not a Democratic or Republican agenda, not a public or private agenda, not a labor or business agenda, but a bipartisan plan that put our children first. That was 2009. Today something else is happening.
    Today, this Republican majority is singlehandedly implementing policies that include none of that due diligence. These bills were introduced at the behest of well-financed interest groups with one goal in mind: profits. This process swipes in the face of the reforms that have been put in place in good faith by members on both sides of the aisle and at the work that was done to ensure that our reforms actually fixed the individual schools we are dissatisfied with, instead of lining the pockets of those who wish to tap into a new market—our children.
    Today’s bills provide no accountability and no transparency. Our Democratic amendments that were offered to shine light on this process, were rejected along party lines. That, too, will be telling.
    Educating our children is not a business. Dealing with our kids in this willy-nilly style, blowing the top off the charter schools cap without providing for standards of success and measures of accountability is irresponsible and a betrayal of our responsibilities to our children’s future.
    I’m not against choice. Our 2009 reforms provided that choice, but those choices were ones specifically selected because they had standing records of success. If we don’t mandate success, what do we get?
    Recently, an organization called Excellent Schools Detroit hosted a series of shoppers’ fairs for parents to find out about and consider enrolling in successful schools in the city of Detroit. The standards to be invited to this fair for elementary and middle schools were to have at least 75 percent of their students rated as proficient in both reading and math MEAP tests. For high schools, they had to have a 16.5 average on ACT tests. Neither of these are particularly spectacular standards and therein lies the issue.
    Detroit Public Schools, for all its well-publicized issues, outperformed Detroit’s charter schools. More elementary, middle and high schools from DPS were invited to the fair than were charters. This does not give me the impression that DPS is outshining its current dismal reputation. It does, however, give me the knowledge that the reputation of charter schools as the singlehanded silver bullet to our educational problems in Michigan is severely overblown.
    To my friends and colleagues on both sides of these aisles, I say this: Good public schools should be nurtured, and bad ones, should be shuttered. Good charter schools should be nurtured, and bad ones should be shuttered. The legislation proposed today does everything to eliminate the limits on how many charter schools can open in the state of Michigan, but entirely because of this Republican majority’s resistance to bipartisan solution, it does nothing to ensure that those are high-quality schools.

  • 10-06-2011 9:30 PM In reply to

    Re: 2011 Senate Bill 618 (Eliminate charter school cap; allow “privatized” teachers )

    Senator Gregory’s statement is as follows:
    I rise in opposition to this bill. I would like to speak on behalf of the special education students who otherwise won’t have a voice. I would like to give you some figures to start out with. The total enrollment in traditional schools in the fiscal year 2009-2010 was 1,487,297 students. In charter schools, there were 108,425 students. The total number of special education full-time employees in fiscal year 2009-2010 in traditional schools was 61,311. In the charter schools, it was 1,400. For traditional schools, it is about 4 percent of their population, and for charter schools, it is less than 1 percent. The total special education enrollment head count for traditional schools in fiscal year 2009-2010 was 204,579 students. In the charter schools, the enrollment in fiscal year 2009-2010 was 10,727 students. Clearly, the traditional schools service the majority of the special education children.
    Let’s be clear. Charter schools are in business to make a profit. They are not a nonprofit organization. If you are in business to make a profit, you try to service those students who will afford you the best opportunity to make money. Special education students require more of the money coming into the schools that come into these classrooms. By expanding these charter schools, it will take more money from the public schools, which will mean that the special education students who are in the public schools will have less support, less help, and less staff in the classroom to work with them.
    I’m asking my colleagues to consider this as they vote on this charter school expansion. Clearly, the charter schools will place their schools in areas that will accept only those students who will afford them the opportunity for the most money. Clearly, special education students will not fit in the criteria, as indicated by the numbers that have already been demonstrated. They have already shown that 9 percent of their population is special education, and that is across the state. Clearly, it won’t be much more than that once you lift the cap because it costs more money.
    I would ask my colleagues to reconsider their positions as we vote and possibly even hold off on a vote, as there needs to be some language to indicate that charter schools must accept a certain amount of special education students to balance this. There is nothing listed in here. Clearly, this is a design to afford the charter school academies and schools an opportunity to make more money on the backs of Michigan residents and at the expense of special education students.
    I would ask my colleagues to vote “no” on the passage of this bill.

  • 10-06-2011 9:30 PM In reply to

    Re: 2011 Senate Bill 618 (Eliminate charter school cap; allow “privatized” teachers )

    Senator Warren’s statement is as follows:
    The concept of charter schools was born out of a desire to empower teachers to gather together to create a small school that would focus on the neediest of students. They would, we were told, allow for innovation and creativity and then take those ideas that worked to our public schools, so all of our children could benefit from their work. Unfortunately, here in Michigan, the reality is far different. You heard me mention earlier that 80 percent of our charter schools are operated by private for-profit education management organizations—a number which far exceeds any other state in the nation.
    Only a quarter of charter schools nationally have student populations that are similar to local school districts; that they exist in terms of ethnic composition and the proportion of low-income students. These numbers are even starker when it comes to students with disabilities or students classified as English language learners. Teacher and administrator attrition rates in our charter schools range anywhere from 15 percent to 30 percent per year, and that leads to greater instability for our students, but also stifles the innovation charter schools were meant to provide.
    Perhaps most importantly, a growing body of evidence shows that charter schools perform no better when compared to demographically-matched traditional public schools on standardized tests. Isn’t that what this whole experiment was for, to improve student achievement? Why, at a time when we are already struggling to provide proper oversight to the number of charter schools that already exist and which have been rapidly expanded in a relatively short period of time, are we charging forward without reviewing this data and without providing for true accountability and oversight? Why, when we are cutting funding to public schools throughout the state, are we continuing to stretch our vital dollars even further?
    Lifting the cap on charter schools ensures more competition for incredibly scarce resources. It means less resources going into the classroom for our students. Our children need and deserve better.

  • 10-06-2011 9:31 PM In reply to

    Re: 2011 Senate Bill 618 (Eliminate charter school cap; allow “privatized” teachers )

    Senator Young’s statement is as follows:
    I would like to start with a quote: “The school is the last expenditure upon which America should be willing to economize.” Mr. President, I offer this amendment to eliminate the tax exemption for privately-owned buildings used for educational purposes. Private companies should not be making a profit with taxpayer dollars and then receive an exemption for paying taxes themselves. Our cities and townships stand to lose revenue as businesses purchase large pieces of land for charter school property.
    We have all heard from our local leaders on the financial struggles of our local communities and cannot put them at a further disadvantage. Any reforms to the school code should be focused on providing a better education for students, not providing bigger profit margins for private businesses. In the interest of fairness, in the interest of what is right and what’s just, I urge my colleagues to remove this tax exemption.

  • 10-06-2011 9:31 PM In reply to

    Re: 2011 Senate Bill 618 (Eliminate charter school cap; allow “privatized” teachers )

    Senator Anderson’s statement is as follows:
    I rise today to speak against this package, but to also ask for a call to action on this amendment. I ask for support on this amendment to add anti-bullying language to our school code.
    Folks, we are undertaking efforts under the suggested premise of improving our kids’ education, so why aren’t we ensuring their safety and security while they are at school, whether it is a public or a private school or a charter school? Bullying hurts our kids’ ability to succeed and even survive. Bullying can lead to increased absences, depression, and, in extreme cases, even suicide. While we may not agree on much today, when we are considering these bills, we should all be able to agree on protecting our kids and keeping them safe. Michigan has the dubious distinction currently of being one of only three states that has failed to adopt anti-bullying legislation.
    This amendment would rectify that and go a long way to providing a safe learning environment for all of our kids across Michigan, or you can continue to ignore the problem with all this talk about giving parents more choices. Don’t you think all parents would choose to provide their children or prevent their children from being bullied and defend them and protect them where they are? You have a choice, too, to stand up for all of our kids and support this measure to implement an anti-bullying policy for all of Michigan’s schools.
    I urge you to support this amendment.

  • 10-06-2011 9:33 PM In reply to

    Re: 2011 Senate Bill 618 (Eliminate charter school cap; allow “privatized” teachers )

    Senator Gleason’s statement is as follows:
    I don’t think it matters what part of the state you come from. Bullying is pretty recognizable and it is definable, but there is something lacking when we leave this decision up to the local schools. This is an issue that has been lacking for a number of years. Actually, since the inception of charter schools, we have been remiss with public scrutiny. We don’t expect the transparency out of charter schools that we do out of public schools.
    There is a remedy for that, and we ought to utilize it. This bullying is determined across the board, as the previous speaker had mentioned, by individual school districts, but we have a flaw with charter schools. Those parents who send their kids to charter schools, they don’t have a chance to vote on the administration of that school district. There is no publicly-elected school board. Why in the world would we have a charter school that sits in Genesee County have a policy determined by someone who makes a profit for that school up in Mt. Pleasant?
    This is a terrible oversight that we have not taken on the responsibility to legislate. Once again, we just advocate our role and say we can let kids get bullied. I don’t know how you feel about this personally, but I have seen and read and heard enough about the young people in this state committing suicide and losing their lives because they have been bullied in, really, a public setting. It is long overdue that we address this issue.
    You know, I have heard for many years that we can’t address the bullying issue because some people think God wants certain people to be treated this way. They hide behind their religious view. I have a religion too, and I am proud of it. I try to live it every moment that I can, but there is not a God who was ever thought of or believed in or had faith in that said that we should hurt our young people. This is a terrible thing to continue bullying in our state.
    I think it’s high time that we as Senators take our election seriously, and we want to represent all realms of our districts. When are we going to stand up for the most feeble? When are we going to stand up for the little ones? We have Dominique Calhoun recently, and there was another death in Genesee County. Suicide on a regular basis: happening much too often, and nobody can deny what is causing these suicides. These kids can’t even go to a public setting. They can’t even go to their schools where each and every one of us wants them to be. There is no thought about tomorrow, there is no dream about promises, and there is no thought about hope of career. They can’t even get through the day in their school. They can’t go to the cafeteria to get the nutrients required. Many of them can’t go to the restroom because they know that they will be assaulted out of sight and out of view of teachers and administrators.
    This bullying issue has gone on far too long. I don’t care if it is in a charter school or a public school. We ought to end it, and it is high time that we got on the side of these kids. This is your responsibility. You have a rate of high culpability if you continue to allow these suicides to happen in our state. Don’t blame it on politics, and don’t blame it on government. You are a Senator, and you have a button to vote on today whether you are going to end these suicides and these deaths. I think we ought to do it. There are documents that I have read that have said, in some instances, 70 percent of school kids are being bullied—70 percent. You need to look at this as an individual. Don’t look at this as some public official. Look at this as an individual, and when you figure that enough young people have died because of fear and fear that has been developed because of bullying, then you will do the right thing.
    We are doing one thing that is not completely right today by voting in regards to charter schools because this bullying ought to end everywhere at any time. Let’s do the right thing. Let’s stick up for the kids today.

  • 10-06-2011 9:33 PM In reply to

    Re: 2011 Senate Bill 618 (Eliminate charter school cap; allow “privatized” teachers )

    Senator Caswell statement is as follows:
    Obviously, there is a lot of passion on this issue, and obviously, this is a very complicated issue and an issue that needs to be discussed own it’s on merit. I think it is poor that we get a six- to eight-page amendment thrown at us at the last minute with no ability to do any kind of analysis, with no ability to look at any of the implications.
    I sincerely appreciate the previous speaker’s explanation of the law since I am not a lawyer. This is not the vehicle by which this issue should be discussed. We are talking about an entirely different issue here today, and this is certainly an issue that needs to be discussed and will be discussed in the future. This is not appropriate, in my opinion.

  • 10-13-2011 10:12 AM In reply to

    Re: 2011 Senate Bill 618 (Eliminate charter school cap; allow “privatized” teachers )

    Senator Johnson asked and was granted unanimous consent to make a statement and moved that the statement be printed in the Journal.
    The motion prevailed.
    Senator Johnson’s statement is as follows:
    I rise today to retract a vote I made last week on an amendment to Senate Bill No. 618. I realize that one cannot officially take back a vote, but under the circumstances, I felt it necessary to explain the mistake.
    The amendment offered said that “the governing body of a public school academy shall not enter into an agreement with a for-profit educational management company to provide comprehensive educational administration management or instructional services or staff to a public school.”
    As someone who has been a huge advocate for education, no matter the form in which that education comes—whether it is homeschool, private, traditional public, charter—I am someone who also recognizes there are good and bad actors in the environment. I think that the intent of this body is to always wean out or set aside people who have not been good actors in this market.
    To the extent that I personally have a relationship with at least two outstanding providers, I do not wish to cast a scourge on them with such a broad brush. While I agree with the intent and absolutely do, in fact, side with the author of this amendment, I wanted to make sure that a couple of management companies I know that do very good work are kept outside of this.
    So it is today that I make this explanation as to why I would like to take back that vote, although on the record I cannot.

  • 12-14-2011 6:19 AM In reply to

    Re: 2011 Senate Bill 618 (Eliminate charter school cap; allow “privatized” teachers )

     Hey Michigan Voter,

    Your argument goes both ways.  Students all have different capabilities, and abilities to learn.  It's up to the family, the student, the schools, and the teacher to find a way to achieve the goal of educating.  Why do charter schools threaten you?   How many families have left your school district when given the choice of a charter?  They are public schools, not private as your agenda supports.  So state the facts in your argument  They are supported by the taxpayers as any other "public" school is.  You should educate yourself on what opportunities in education are made available to the student because of the "competition"  from the charter schools, remember "it's all about the kids."    

  • 12-14-2011 4:13 PM In reply to

    Re: 2011 Senate Bill 618 (Eliminate charter school cap; allow “privatized” teachers )

     There is one word that best describes this bill:    YES!   Why?   For competition and the ones who would benefit from this?  The kids!

     

  • 12-14-2011 4:58 PM In reply to

    • gypsy
    • Top 10 Contributor
    • Joined on 03-19-2009

    Re: 2011 Senate Bill 618 (Eliminate charter school cap; allow “privatized” teachers )

    Charter schools have not proven to provide a better education for children.
    There's not much difference between the test scores of most charter schools compared to traditional public schools in Genesee County, according to a Flint Journal review of the average percentages of students who met or exceeded standards on the 2008 Michigan Educational Assessment Program (MEAP) test.

  • 12-15-2011 1:53 PM In reply to

    Re: 2011 Senate Bill 618 (Eliminate charter school cap; allow “privatized” teachers )

    This bill was just passed.  When will this site show who voted for and against its final passage?  I'm specifically interested in the last time the House of Representatives voted on it.

  • 12-15-2011 2:09 PM In reply to

    Re: 2011 Senate Bill 618 (Eliminate charter school cap; allow “privatized” teachers )

    Judging whole groups of charter and public schools based upon the performance of individual schools of those kinds doesn't make sense.  I attended public schools as a child and I received a very good education.  My son has always attended charter schools and he has just started attending a charter high school.  He's getting an excellent education and the charter schools in this region outperform public schools statewide on standardized tests like MEAP.  Some of the schools in this area of the state, which is not the same one in which I attended school, are good, but the charter schools are better.  It was a simple decision to send my son to the school that would give him the best possible education.

    I think that rather than wasting time on arguments about whether one group of schools is better than the other, we need to establish legislation that makes all schools accountable for the poor performance of their students.  All schools can be good.  All schools should be good.  The reason they're not is that their teachers and administrations aren't motivated to make them good.  If the teachers aren't motivated, then they won't stimulate the children to be motivated to learn.

    I'm tired of hearing proponents of each group of school claim that theirs is the one right way to teach children.  That sounds like a religious argument.  I think the presence of and eliminating the cap on charter schools is a great thing, because it stimulates competition in the state's education system.  Consumers, which are the parents of students in this case, benefit greatly from this competition.  Now we need additional accountability.

    Get to it, legislators!

  • 12-15-2011 10:46 PM In reply to

    Re: 2011 Senate Bill 618 (Eliminate charter school cap; allow “privatized” teachers )

    I'm not sure this is a competition that serves our schools, our kids, and our communities well. This bill makes it difficult for my town's public schools to make long-term decisions on staffing, infrastructure, programs, etc because it makes enrollment unpredictable. And more instability is not what we need right now. 

  • 12-19-2011 11:34 AM In reply to

    Re: 2011 Senate Bill 618 (Eliminate charter school cap; allow “privatized” teachers )

    You have some good points here but we need to see the whole picture. The new bill will encourage a better quality of education and we do need better quality by all means. Our students pay so much to go through college and at the end of this cycle they have a really hard time to find the jobs they were trained for. My daughter recently got her online degree business administration, she went for this option because she found it more affordable and I realize now that she made a good choice since the quality of her education is up to the current standards.

  • 12-19-2011 11:41 AM In reply to

    Re: 2011 Senate Bill 618 (Eliminate charter school cap; allow “privatized” teachers )

    After the bill has passed, I've learned that high-performing charter schools were never subject to the cap anyway.  If a charter school could demonstrate that they were giving their students the best education possible and the students in that school received good grades (presumably that's judged by their scores on standardized tests), then the state would allow the school to open additional locations, etc.

    I feel that organizations like MAPSA gave very little information about this issue on purpose, so that they could urge everybody to contact their representatives about it.  I just wonder why MAPSA would do this.  Why would they want the cap removed from poorly performing schools?  Is it truly to promote competition?  I think the real purpose is monetary or political.  Look at the vote results.  Only Republicans voted for it, yet education is something that I wouldn't expect to be polarized along party lines.  Something is wrong here.

    My representative pointed out that 75% of Michigan charter schools are performing below average.  The charter school my son attends has always been excellent, so I assumed all charter schools would be.  I can see now that I was wrong.

    I hope Gov. Snyder vetoes this bill.  If it passes, I hope legislators will work to make charter schools and public schools equally accountable for the quality of education they offer their students.

  • 12-21-2011 11:00 PM In reply to

    Re: 2011 Senate Bill 618 (Eliminate charter school cap; allow “privatized” teachers )

    ItMatters,

    First of all, charter schools do not threaten me. Nor did I suggest that they were not public schools. However, here are some facts from my experience. 1. Charter schools do not have to operate under the same rules as regular public schools. They do not have to accept everyone who shows up like regular public schools nor do they have to keep them. Charter schools also do not have to do the same amount of documentation regarding student progress that the regular public schools do nor do they have to do much about proving what they are doing to improve student progress. 2. I work in special education so I routinely get IEPs from the schools the kids are coming from. I have yet to find an IEP from a charter school that is even halfway toward being well written. 3. There have been several families that have left the district to go to charters and, guess what, about 75% of them return. 4. I have no problem with "competetion" if it is a fair one. Make the charter schools follow the same rules, prove their results, take everyone who shows up and keep them like the regular public schools do and provide the same services.

  • 09-15-2012 11:25 AM In reply to

    Re: 2011 Senate Bill 618 (Eliminate charter school cap)

    I think being able to eliminate this is such a great idea. Being able to bring in more is so good to see. The options will pay off in the long run here. Keep up the good work. Accounts Receivable
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