Thursday, December 3, 2009

Globe staff has fun?

I am given to understand that some of the greatest fun that can be had by newspaper staffers is the juxtaposition of different items for humor's sake. Unlike those in the rarified air of opinion-making, these folks carry out subtle digs for the benefit of alert readers.

Hence I wonder if it's a coincidence that we see this article in today's Globe:

It looks as if five questions will be on next year’s statewide ballot in Massachusetts...a third would lift the cap on the number of charter schools from its current 120.

About two inches away from that article comes this:

A Springfield charter school placed under investigation by state education officials after its test scores spiked dramatically is now being run by a convicted felon....Swan pleaded guilty in 2007 to a $900,000 bid-rigging scheme at the Southwest Community Health Center where he was director. He was sentenced to two years of probation, including a year of house arrest.

On the other hand, an expert in bid-fixing is completely at home in Paul Reville's world of education.

I could go much more in-depth about this on the utter lack of democratic control or accountability for charter schools, but I'm just not in that kind of mood today. But I can't stop wondering how aggressively charter schools sought signatures from students' families on their ballot question -- using school resources for such politicking is par for the course for these non-public institutions.

However, I would refer you to this piece about changing school start times, something I brought up earlier in my occasional series on cheap and easy ways to improve public education.

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