Friday, November 27, 2009

Sharon Higgins report on Oakland charter per pupil spending

The work Sharon Higgins does at her Perimeter Primate blog is invaluable. This came in from Pete Farrugio. Pete and I taught together at PS 16 in Williamsburg in the late 60's when we were newbie teachers. When I started going to meetings of Another View in District 14 in 1970, my first teacher activist group, I brought Pete along. Pete has gone on to a college level career and has continued his activism. In the small world department, NYCORE's Bree Picower, who we are associated with now, told me Pete was a mentor when she was at Berkeley.

Sharon Higgins published a report on public per pupil spending that compares Oakland, CA's charters with regular public schools (some of which are part of Oakland's small schools initiative and have been treated favorably compared to larger neighborhood schools)

Here's the link to her blog. The punch line is that the politically connected charters are spending lots more than local schools, even though the locals have most of the ELLs and special ed kids. What's more, I've personally noticed that in most neighborhoods the lowest proficiency ELLs (kids who barely understand or speak English, and thus score lowest on the English high stakes exam) are pretty much not in the charters.


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