June 10, 2012
Brian Johnson

Corporate Execs Spend Big And Hand Charter School Executive Strong Showing In California

The eyes of many concerned with the nation’s schools were on Wisconsin this week, as school voucher advocate Governor Scott Walker (R-WI) handily defeated his Democratic proponent, further paving the way for school privatization in his state.

But on the West Coast, yet another struggle over the nation’s schools was being fought. In two pivotal state assembly races, teacher’s unions and financial executives spent big on their respective sides, hoping to either constrict or expand charter schools and school choice.

In both races, the candidates backed by the financial sector — charter school executive Brian Johnson in Assembly District 46 and Democrat Ian …

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May 14, 2012

Charter School Lobby Group Quits ALEC Two Days After Being Identified By Republic Report

On Saturday, Republic Report’s Zaid Jilani reported that the National Association of Charter School Authorizers was one of the many covert members of the American Legislative Exchange Council, the controversial front group that helps lobbyists ghostwrite state law. As Jilani noted, NACSA is funded in large part by taxpayer dollars:

NACSA is financed in part by school districts and state departments of education. Here are just a few of NACSA’s members that fall into this category: Denver Public Schools, Baltimore City Public Schools, Arkansas Department of Education, California Department of Education, and the Los Angeles Unified School District.

NACSA …

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27 comments
May 12, 2012

Charter Schools Association Is Using Taxpayer Money To Support ALEC’s Radical Agenda

The American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) is a powerful corporate front group that works to pass Big Business-written laws in state legislatures. Following the outcry over the group pushing “Stand Your Ground” laws, at least fifteen major corporations, foundations, and other organizations have decided to end their funding commitments to ALEC.

But ALEC has another way of financing itself that doesn’t involve private corporations at all. The National Association of Charter School Authorizers (NACSA) is one of ALEC’s members at least through 2009 and may well still be a member. NACSA’s president and CEO Greg Richmond joined ALEC’s Education Task Force around …

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April 2, 2012
DFER's Joe Williams (from DFER's website).

Democrats For Education Reform Head Says Charter Schools Should Use Per Pupil Dollars For Lobbying

One of Big Money’s last targets for privatization is America’s public schools. Using a variety of policy schemes ranging from school vouchers to for-profit charter schools, the education privatization movement seeks to take over America’s largely public K-12 education system and put it in the hands of some of the very same people who caused the financial crash on Wall Street.

One group that has been successful in pushing this wave of privatization is Democrats For Education Reform (DFER), a group of largely finance industry Democrats who advocate for expansion of charter schools and high-stakes testing, among other …

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19 comments
March 13, 2012

Georgia Charter School Lobbyists Buying Lawmakers Pictures With Former Braves Pitcher John Smoltz To Win Their Votes

Charter school lobbyists in Georgia are trying to woo politicians with thousands of dollars worth of meals, documentary screenings, and framed photos of former longtime Braves pitcher John Smoltz.

This barrage of money being spent – $7,800 since January – comes as the Georgia legislature considers a bill that would allow the state to cover the costs of charter schools, regardless of if the local school board accepts them. This ruling could set a national precedent, and, critics argue, could pull needed funding away from cash-strapped districts, although GOP leaders have promised this will not happen.

Instead of focusing on the implications of this …

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