Charters’ failure rate a source of strength
The trouble with school choice is a headline that accurately describes Karen Franciscos commentary of Aug. 5 because she seems to find little but trouble. For a riposte, someone given equal space could detail the trouble with statist assignment with no choices allowed parents.
One point she makes about charter-school champions never imagining such a thing as a failing charter school deserves clarification.
The Center for Education Reform, a private organization that both advocates and tracks charters, has kept a running account of charter schools that failed to deliver what they promised. Of the 6,700 charters that have opened in the U.S. since 1992, 1,036 of them, or 15 percent, have closed for cause, the center reports. That reality is a source of strength for the charter movement. Rarely do conventional public schools close for any reason.
Francisco has a point about parents having subjective reasons for wanting to patronize schools that fall short of objective measures, such as test scores. Safety – often meaning a child being free from bullying – is certainly one powerful reason for many. A private-school voucher may be a familys passport to just such a secure environment, and the schools ability to enforce its own standards may be critical to making that happen.
ROBERT HOLLAND Senior Fellow for Education Policy The Heartland Institute Chicago
Time to focus on health plan’s effects
Im writing to find out about how President Obamas health care reforms will affect people who are already insured by their employer, and more specifically, those who are government-employed at the city level.
Ive heard a lot of viewpoints on why or why not his plan is constitutional but very little of substance as to how it would influence my life, if at all. An article about its effects would be much appreciated.
SCOTT CRISWELL Fort Wayne
Here’s how we all get a gold-medal life
I am convinced that sports and athletes should come under the helpful hand of our government, just as President Obama thinks our money is, in order to make it better for all of us.
Just like a millionaire who has too much money for himself, Michael Phelps has too many gold medals for himself. How many gold medals does one person need? I mean, when is beating all comers and winning your sports top prizes enough? Its just not fair to the rest of the athletes who dont get a chance to win gold medals and be on TV all the time.
Seriously, Phelps didnt win all those medals by himself. There were multitudes of others who helped him: the ones who built the natatoriums he uses to swim, the people in the organizations that hosted those competitions and the others who competed against Phelps but did not win anything – they all should be rewarded with the same accolades.
Just because those also rans didnt train long enough and hard enough, or seek out the best possible coaching, or commit their entire personal time to perfection doesnt mean they shouldnt get a piece of the glory. Phelps is just being selfish and should have been reined in after his first Olympics by someone who knows about hope and change.
That way we can all have a better life, right?
GLENN CECKOWSKI Fort Wayne