Northwest Voices | Letters to the Editor
Reconsider charter-school stance, says The Times
Move to the middle
I am dismayed to read The Times’ editorial, “PTA should rethink charter-school stance,” [Opinion, Aug. 20].
It’s not too surprising to me, a National Board Certified teacher and librarian with 16 years of experience and the mother of a fourth-grader, that “the charter schools that outperform public schools share a common strength: parent involvement.” The sad part about charters is that they don’t necessarily require parent involvement, and Initiative 1240 doesn’t require any local control either. Get it? There’s the rub and one of the biggest issues any school has to solve if the students are to be successful. The WAPTA board got it, and they are right.
And to state that charter schools are “garnering success in 41 states” is just plain misinformation. There is no research to show that charters do any better at educating children; in fact, they are falling behind public schools in how they serve special needs students. I fear that if The Times’ editorial board doesn’t move to the middle of the so-called education-reform issues in our state, that it may end up with only 1 percent readership. The other 99 percent of us need public schools that treat kids equally so they can grow up to be discerning readers of information, and even newspapers.
— Karen Kline, Bellevue
The Washington PTA is right to oppose Initiative 1240. It is taking a principled stand based on PTA’s values of parental involvement in schools. While the best charters may indeed have greater parental involvement, this initiative has no safeguards to ensure such involvement and little to ensure we only get the best charters.
Whether one supports charters in general or not, I-1240 is not good charter legislation and the PTA is right to oppose it.
— Demian Godon, Seattle