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Renton School Board Opposes Initiative 1240

Board members join others opposing the charter schools measure on the Nov. 6 ballot.

The Renton School Board voted unanimously at their regular meeting on Wednesday night to oppose Initiative 1240, the charter school measure that will appear on the Nov. 6 ballot.

At least nine other Washington school boards have voted to oppose the measure (Read the ballot measure here).

Initiative 1240 would permit the creation and operation of up to 40 privately run, but publicly funded, schools. While charter schools are legal in some other states, Washington state voters have rejected past charter schools measures.

Renton board members passed a resolution opposing the measure for these reasons:

• Has a lack of oversight by locally-elected school officials: public education funding should be overseen by school officials elected in their local communities; and
• Implementation of the Initiative will create additional administrative functions and costs for the State Board of Education, the state’s education office, and local school districts, further draining dollars from already underfunded, existing public schools; and
• Local public education resources would be placed under private management, including charter boards and out-of-state charter management companies, undermining the local public accountability and protection of resources that communities and taxpayers expect and deserve; and
• Allows existing public schools to be “converted” to a charter school by a simple majority vote without professional assessment, analysis or investigation; and 
• Privately operated but publicly-funded charter schools will serve only a small part of Washington’s student population, providing no guarantee that students who are struggling will have access to charter schools; and
• Innovative programs and schools—which are inclusive, equitable and accountable—have been created throughout the state in increasing numbers under the currently authorized governance structure of locally elected school district boards of directors.

What's your take on cherter schools and Initiative 1240? Tell us in the comment section below.

Kristen Harris October 13, 2012 at 04:32 AM
Interesting. Leave it to the school board to completely ignore the truth about charter schools. If a student and their parents decide to attend a charter school the public money goes with them. So if the school is not satisfactory they may lose students but the district will not lose any. Charter schools simply give Washington students a choice and Washington will become the 42 state to allow them. The reason states keep voting in favor is because they have proved to be most beneficial to the entire district. But of course the school board in their narrow and defensive position are completely ignoring the over all benefits and instead operating on a base of fear. Vote yes and discover the amazing benefits of charter schools for uplifting an entire district.

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