The public school is the cornerstone of community empowerment and advancement in American society. However, there are some who advocate for handing these public institutions and dollars over to private interests — despite overwhelming data showing such strategies simply don't live up to their promises and run counter to core educational values of equity and opportunity.
In the midst of a continuous push for privatization from Washington, DC and many state capitals, it's more important than ever to ask, "When it comes to supporting public schools, does my state make the grade?"
A soon-to-be-released report by the Schott Foundation and the Network for Public Education, Grading the States: A Report Card on Our Nation's Commitment to Public Schools, evaluates to what extent the 50 states and the District of Columbia support public schools, or instead funnel public money elsewhere through charter and voucher programs. It is also the first in-depth nonpartisan report card to include state-by-state measurements of whether states with charter and voucher schools protect student civil rights and guard taxpayers from fraud and misuse of public funds.
Our speakers included:
- John H. Jackson, President, the Schott Foundation for Public Education (moderator)
- Carol Burris, Executive Director, the Network for Public Education
- Tanya Clay House, Former Deputy Assistant Secretary for P-12 Education, U.S. Department of Education