The recent editorial by Rockdale County school board member Brad Smith on charter schools was factually correct and well-written.
Further, he offered his views on the possible consequences if HR 1162 is passed. Basically he states that local school boards in Georgia would lose control in establishing charter schools and revenues would be diverted in a manner he deems dangerous.
Well, let one observing taxpayer give you his take on this for just a moment of your time.
Our local school board walks and clucks in unison whenever the superintendent wants them to, and that is often and always.
Secondly, please take a long step back from the forest and look for a few moments. See the lovely upper canopy and now look at the heap of forest litter on the ground. Well that is where we are in Georgia -- "Below" the forest litter in national rankings.
So we see as a whole charter schools are getting the job done very well and local school boards just keep clucking in line with the usual failures and loss of control of students.
Now comes along some ray of hope with charter schools and all that can be said from the old guard is let us keep the old ways and keep sinking with more tax dollars spent on a losing proposition. No. I, for one, will risk it all now to get the old losing administrations of Georgia out of power and try something that is actually working.
The school board administrators are certain, as I am, that their big salaries are in jeopardy if charter schools take the lead in actually putting discipline and real education back into the classroom. Do not even mention home schooling or private religious options that are unquestionably the very best top performers even in the worst ghettos our nation has to offer. They require at a minimum student discipline at its foundation of teacher-student relationship, for without that the results would be what we have now.
The school boards and administrative staffs, with big dollars provided by teachers unions, will fight to keep control of the helm. Well, they are on the deck of another Titanic, and just as the first one could not avoid the iceberg, neither can they. The problems in public education run so deep and wide below the surface that just trying to steer now is too late.
The best course of action is man the lifeboats, i.e., charter schools.
We do have devoted public servants serving on our Georgia school boards, but they have lost the game. Sorry for them and all past and present parents who tried with them, but as you look at the scoreboard Georgia has lost every year in national rankings as far back as I can remember.
Now is the time to be bold. Embrace the new productive way to spend tax dollars and look to a better educated workforce to lure national and international companies to Georgia. Sending the governor of our state around the world, at great expense, to lure them here is plain risky. Just educate our children and they will come. It is that simple. The overall lives of students will be enhanced from graduation day to retirement. Crime will drop and our communities will shine. Just take a quick look at those states that are in the upper rankings and there is your proof.
There are five openings for your local school board this year, so consider wisely who stays and who goes home.
-- Don Meyer