Saturday, April 3, 2010

Families opting for charters

On another post Anonymous wrote:


This article in today's P-G about the proposed charter school in Hazelwood, mentions that this charter would cost the district 2.5 million dollars for the 200 students.

What really jumped out at me was the fact that the district paid 37.3 million dollars in 09-10 for the 2,549 district students already in charter schools! That is alot of money and alot of our students in charter schools. That speaks volumns to me that something is wrong with our school system that so many students opt out.

Recently two different families of potential high school students said they are sending their children elsewhere despite the Pittsburgh Promise. Their children have been in our school system up through grade eight. All the change and uncertainty makes them uneasy. One family is sending their child to a Catholic school, and the other family is sending their child to a private school.

The bottom line is that people who can afford to pay for education, will send their children elsewhere. Families who can't afford to do that, opt for charters."


Questioner said...

Community buy-in is really important. People will accept change if they understand and support the change, particularly if they play a real role in deciding what changes will be made. Charter schools have to show significant community support to obtain approval. That the school district does not need to do so may actually be a disadvantage.

Anonymous said...

True, thus enrollment will continue to drop, electives will continue to diminish, schools will continue to close___ and adult agendas in PPS will continue to thrive at the expense of equity, excellence and strong results for students.
Citizens must continue to coalesce around solutions as opposed to PPS excuses.

Old Timer said...

$85 million (including a free $40 million from Gates) states that the teachers are the problem. While those in the schools know that this is not the case, the cold truth is that $85 million determines the school board's "truth" and planning.
There's a reason families are pulling their kids out of our schools, and it's not ineffective teachers.
10 years from now when we all look back on the shell game played by the Roosevelt people, at the publicity stunt which is the Pittsburgh Promise and at the carnage perpetrated through empowered supervisors run amok, we'll be able to pinpoint just where the fault was as a group. Right now, the simple fact is that the good people at PURE Reform as well as numerous caring teachers who understand how the curriculum in each subject area is a train wreck for our kids are like proverbial voices in the wilderness; easily ignored by administration and occasionally interpreted as figments of the imagination.
At this point in time it all comes down to perseverance and for me, personally, the prayer that people currently calling the shots are soon "outed" for the pretenders they are.

Mark Rauterkus said...

Face it, The Pittsburgh Promise, at its root, is only a bribe. It is payment of money at a later date for some people who choose to stay in the state, for keeping your child in PPS.

In the long run, for some, bribes don't work.

If you aim to go anywhere you want to go -- the Pittsburgh Promise isn't for you. If you raise your kids with the belief that they can do anything they want -- then the Pittsburgh Promise is counter to that philosophy.

The Pgh Promise, as it is presently constructed, gives hope to some who are more on the hopeless range of the spectrum when it comes to post-secondary goals, aspirations, opportunities. For those who can send kids to Central, for instance, or elsewhere, then the Pgh Promise is but a fleeting thought or insignificant motivation.

My $.02 insight.

Questioner said...

Maybe if the percentage of students qualifying remains lower than hoped for, the unused funds can go to expand the program so it will cover tuition at schools out of PA as well as in state. That would provide families with more of a sure thing and be a greater incentive.