SUBSCRIBE to Capitol Fax      Advertise Here      Mobile Version     Exclusive Subscriber Content     Updated Posts    Contact
CapitolFax.com
To subscribe to Capitol Fax, click here.
Today’s must read

Wednesday, Jan 15, 2014

* Back in December, the Sun-Times ran a long piece online by Timothy Meegan entitled “Selecting charters in Chicago a rigged game.” Meegan wrote about how Neighborhood Advisory Councils (NACs) were set up to allow communities to review proposals for new charter schools

[Neighborhood Advisory Councils] are being facilitated by members of Stand for Children, a pro charter school organization. The NW Side NAC is being facilitated by Juan Jose Gonzalez, Stand for Children’s Chicago Director, a fact he refused to reveal in public when asked at a NAC meeting. His wife facilitates the SW Side NAC. This is a glaring conflict of interest.

Mr. Gonzalez even offered one of our NAC members a job at Stand for Children, which is wholly inappropriate.

Everything done on the NAC was paid for by New Schools for Chicago, a venture philanthropy organization dedicated to charter proliferation. Their board includes CEO Barbara Byrd Bennett, Board of Education members Deborah Quazzo and President David Vitale, and Noble investor and gubernatorial candidate Bruce Rauner.

Why? Because charter schools become investment opportunities and tax shelters for the super wealthy. Intrinsic is funded by the Walton foundation, the Broad Foundation, New Schools for Chicago [which has received six-figure funding from the Rauner Family Foundation], and NextGen. Noble investors include Commerce Secretary Penny Pritzker and Bruce Rauner.

New Schools for Chicago spared no expense. They catered all meals, paid for materials and meeting space. They also brought in pro charter “experts” from all over the country to guide us in the process. New Schools hired an organizer named Chris Butler to canvass for the community meetings. On December 7 I asked Mr. Butler how many people were canvassing and for how long, and what specifically they were doing, i.e. passing out flyers, door knocking, etc.

* More on how the process was “fixed”

The process was rigged from the start. The NW side [Neighborhood Advisory Council] examined two high school proposals for the Belmont-Cragin area, Intrinsic and Noble. Intrinsic currently does not have location in mind for its proposed charter; Noble wants to locate its charter across the street from Prosser Career Academy.

Immediately upon joining the NW Side NAC, we had to sign a confidentiality agreement. Conversations have been limited by a very narrow criteria, allowing for almost no qualitative analysis of the proposals. Many members were uncomfortable and voiced their concerns about being limited to the CPS rubric. For example, our decisions were limited to whether non- negotiables, such as Noble’s infamous disciplinary fines, were present in the proposal, not whether they were desirable for a school in our community.

Rules seem to be made up as they go along. Our NAC was overseen by CPS officials from the Office of New Schools and Intergovernmental Affairs. After the NAC decided by majority vote to hold a community meeting at Prosser and had made arrangements with Prosser’s principal, CPS’ John Scott and Emily Metz overruled our decision, claiming the need for a more “neutral” space.

Emphasis added. Go read the whole thing.

- Posted by Rich Miller        


13 Comments
  1. - hisgirlfriday - Wednesday, Jan 15, 14 @ 11:20 am:

    Just like with the prison privatization movement, for-profit charter schools have been shown to facilitate political pay-for-play while not improving outcomes for public services or taxpayer savings any more than the old model.

    The best public education model is still the neighborhood/community-based model, but lazy and corrupt politicians have given up trying to improve/fix broken neighborhoods/communities with investments in neighborhood/community schools and education and instead sold off their schools to the highest bidder making the neighborhoods/communities left behind even more broken than before.


  2. - OneMan - Wednesday, Jan 15, 14 @ 11:30 am:

    Not sure where he gets the investor thing (assuming that means there is a financial upside for the investors). There are Nobel charters that are also named after the guy who started Lands End as well as a Nobel Charter named after the Bulls


  3. - wordslinger - Wednesday, Jan 15, 14 @ 11:44 am:

    There are lucrative federal tax credits for financing new charter schools. That’s one reason why the hedgies and private equity guys are hot for them.

    http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/education/albany-charter-cash-big-banks-making-bundle-new-construction-schools-bear-cost-article-1.448008


  4. - dupage dan - Wednesday, Jan 15, 14 @ 11:46 am:

    Stop the presses. Clout rules in Chicago.

    So what else is new?


  5. - Louis G Atsaves - Wednesday, Jan 15, 14 @ 12:00 pm:

    I usually stay away from public school board issues and other related matters that go bump in the night, but this one raises as few questions. I agree with the author’s complaint of a lack of transparency. But the author is a CPS teacher. The CPS makes up all the rules and seems to promote the lack of transparency. That shouldn’t come as a shock to anyone.

    Tax rules that promote donations to improve the lives of kids in an educational setting are now evil and cynically used by cynical billionaires as a tax shelter?

    With skyrocketing unaffordable property taxes to support schools in this state, and the various disparities in funding school districts statewide, we should be enticing more cynical billionaires to donate to them, as public policy form of property taxpayer relief.

    Public schools good, charter schools evil vs. public schools evil, charter schools good arguments just give me a massive headache. The only solution is a couple of aspirins.


  6. - xian - Wednesday, Jan 15, 14 @ 1:25 pm:

    The New Markets Tax Credit is hardy an “tax rule that promotes donations to improve the lives of kids in an educational setting”. It’s more similar to the tax waiver for new baseball team owners.

    It gives incentives to do things that were already profitable and desirable. It’s basically a free handout.

    Some charters are better and some are worse than neighborhood schools, but it’s a bad gamble–overall, when accounting for their own selectivity (who can fill out an application), they perform worse.

    Furthermore, it’s profitable to invest in charter building bonds without the extra NMTC.

    It’s so sweet, it creates the opposite dynamic-strong incentive to lobby for and promote charters in areas where they are inferior or unnecessary to reap huge incentives out of the public coffers.

    I would remove charter construction from the NMTC, but if we keep it, there should be a provision that the credits are based on actual improvement, and they should be lessened greatly.


  7. - Ghost - Wednesday, Jan 15, 14 @ 1:52 pm:

    I don’t see this as a big deal; in the end we get additional well funded schools. Are we really wanting to roll back education funding? If the concern is access the. Encourage more of this in blighted areas with larger tax benefits. Better funded schools is never going to be bad to me


  8. - Rod - Wednesday, Jan 15, 14 @ 1:53 pm:

    I think there are real problems in the CPS charter approval process, which is why CPS today tabled voting on a big pile of charter proposals. But that being said, and it also being said as blog readers know I don’t think highly of Mr. Rauner, his many gifts to charter schools are probably based on his belief in market mechanisms as the very best way to improve education for low income students in Chicago.

    Regardless whether the gift from Mr Rauner was to Payton, a traditional selective non-charter school, or to Noble Street charter school the tax issues are fundamentally the same. Mr. Rauner believes that charters offer choice to low income students and he has repeatedly stated that choice can set these poor students on the path to success. He currently has one charter school named after himself see http://raunercollegeprep.noblenetwork.org/

    I have seen no evidence that Mr. Rauner has any investments in the private for profit education sector, if he does and someone out there knows of it please post the information.

    I don’t agree with Mr. Rauner’s position on charter schools and competition being a major issue for improving the education of poor children in Chicago. But I don’t see his primary motivation being making a buck on charters either.


  9. - Grandson of Man - Wednesday, Jan 15, 14 @ 3:02 pm:

    “hedgies and private equity guys”

    I saw a documentary on charter schools in New York or some other eastern city. It showed poor kids being helped by charter schools. I was just about to grab the kleenex to dab away a tear when the show mentioned the “greedy” teachers union and that it’s destroying education.


  10. - Downstater - Wednesday, Jan 15, 14 @ 3:06 pm:

    Charter schools seem to be a great alternative the many failed public schools in urban areas. If charter schools don’t make a difference, then why do people get on a waiting list to get in.
    Any competition to the public education sector has to be good for everyone.


  11. - Rod - Wednesday, Jan 15, 14 @ 4:25 pm:

    Downstater CPS has no audited wait lists for charter schools all the data is being self reported by charter schools in Chicago. I am not saying it falsified, but families apply to many different schools simultaneously here in Chicago there are hundreds of CPS schools and charter schools. So one family may appear of several wait lists, the data is highly unreliable.


  12. - Percival - Wednesday, Jan 15, 14 @ 6:06 pm:

    I think people here are being a bit too erudite in saying charter schools are great and that makes it all fine. Even beyond the ends and means counter to those conclusions, Joe Sixpack is going to hear “some sort of proceeding fixed by people who had a huge conflict of interest, financed by Bruce Rauner.” This may not have legs, but it is hardly a trifle. Time will tell.


  13. - BobInPeoria - Wednesday, Jan 15, 14 @ 10:08 pm:

    Stand for Children gave large contributions to one of Peoria’s state reps——Jehan Gordon-Booth(Dem).
    Found it…..$100K in 2010 cycle, per Rich Miller in Illinois Times, Oct 21 2010… SfC gave $650K, mostly to Dems…

    http://illinoistimes.com/article-7903-who’s-behind-stand-for-children-.html


TrackBack URI

Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.


* Afternoon updates
* Question of the Day
* #AOLhacked
* GOP Leaders are "Nay" to Obama library
* Reilly talks up TIF changes over prop tax
* Morning Shorts
* Yesterday's blog posts

Support CapitolFax.com
Visit our advertisers...

...............

...............

...............

...............

...............

...............


Search This Blog...

Search the 98th General Assembly By Bill Number
(example: HB0001)

Search the 98th General Assembly By Keyword

          
        * Another Taxi Company App, Estonia’s Taxify, Takes In $100K To Grow In Eastern Europe
        * Chinese Android Phone Maker Xiaomi Preps Big Global Push For This Year
        * Internet Users Send 204 Million Emails Per Minute
        * Fix This App: R.B.I. Baseball needs to correct some errors before it's a hit
        * Asha app spotlight: Championship Edition PAC-MAN
        * Viber Finally Goes Flat With New iOS Design
        * Xiaomi unveils Mi routers and set-top box, no tablet in sight

        * Bluelounge’s Jimi is a Fine Looking USB Extender
        * Mario Kart 8 Demo Rumored For Release Ahead Of Official Game
        * Borderlands For PS3 Going Offline Next Month
        * iPod Lineup Could Be Replaced By iWatch, According To Analyst
        * You’ll Need an Exterminator For This iPhone Case
        * David Foster Wallace's Best Productivity Tricks
        * Withings Pulse O2 Monitors Your Blood Oxygen Level

        * Rienzo tasked with slowing Detroit's powerful lineup
        * Leesman endures short outing in first start
        * Tigers 8, White Sox 6: Turning a mismatch into a game
        * Leesman endures short outing in first start
        * Ventura not basing decisions solely on pitch count
        * Gillaspie sits out with sore left hand
        * Relief corps showing signs of working into shape


        Main Menu
        Home
        Illinois
        YouTube
        Pundit rankings
        Obama
        Subscriber Content
        Durbin
        Burris
        Blagojevich Trial
        Advertising
        Updated Posts
        Polls

        Archives
        April 2014
        March 2014
        February 2014
        January 2014
        December 2013
        November 2013
        October 2013
        September 2013
        August 2013
        July 2013
        June 2013
        May 2013
        April 2013
        March 2013
        February 2013
        January 2013
        December 2012
        November 2012
        October 2012
        September 2012
        August 2012
        July 2012
        June 2012
        May 2012
        April 2012
        March 2012
        February 2012
        January 2012
        December 2011
        November 2011
        October 2011
        September 2011
        August 2011
        July 2011
        June 2011
        May 2011
        April 2011
        March 2011
        February 2011
        January 2011
        December 2010
        November 2010
        October 2010
        September 2010
        August 2010
        July 2010
        June 2010
        May 2010
        April 2010
        March 2010
        February 2010
        January 2010
        December 2009
        November 2009
        October 2009
        September 2009
        August 2009
        July 2009
        June 2009
        May 2009
        April 2009
        March 2009
        February 2009
        January 2009
        December 2008
        November 2008
        October 2008
        September 2008
        August 2008
        July 2008
        June 2008
        May 2008
        April 2008
        March 2008
        February 2008
        January 2008
        December 2007
        November 2007
        October 2007
        September 2007
        August 2007
        July 2007
        June 2007
        May 2007
        April 2007
        March 2007
        February 2007
        January 2007
        December 2006
        November 2006
        October 2006
        September 2006
        August 2006
        July 2006
        June 2006
        May 2006
        April 2006
        March 2006
        February 2006
        January 2006
        December 2005
        April 2005
        March 2005
        February 2005
        January 2005
        December 2004
        November 2004
        October 2004

        Blog*Spot Archives
        November 2005
        October 2005
        September 2005
        August 2005
        July 2005
        June 2005
        May 2005

        Syndication

        RSS Feed 2.0
        Comments RSS 2.0
        WordPress

        Loading


        * Correction: Illinois Medicaid-Overpayments story..
        * Illinois infrastructure has improved — but it's.....
        * Rauner details some immigration views..
        * Bruce Rauner details some views on immigration..
        * Mayor Rahm Emanuel Man at Rauner Campaign..
        * Urbana property taxes to rise because of tax ex.....
        * Rauner draws City Hall rebuke over robocalls ti.....
        * Jim Oberweis nixes the bipartisan immigration r.....
        * Internal Memo Says Illinois Medicaid Paid $12 M.....


        * APNewsBreak: Gacy case helps solve unrelated death
        * Lawsuit seeks investigation of hiring under Quinn
        * Lawsuit against Mississippi gun dealer settled
        * Hastert among GOP supporters of immigration reform
        * Ex-radical group member says university ending job
        * Spring corn planting still sputters in key states
        * Death penalty case shifts focus to slain Ill. kids
        * Illinois audit: Police training money misspent
        * Man convicted in 1957 Illinois death appeals
        * Acco to add 162-job call center in Booneville

        * Clock ticking for states to adopt health exchanges
        * Madigan re-elected to lead state Democratic party
        * Hastert, other state Republicans supporting immigration reform
        * Lawsuit seeks investigation of hiring under Quinn
        * GOP lawmaker objects to 9-0 vote for Obama library
        * DNR mining-oversight official fired
        * Democrats: Illinois schools could face major cuts
        * State prisons to use costly drug for hepatitis C
        * Illinois Medicaid paying for dead clients
        * Quinn grants 43 clemency requests

        * Why a racetrack honcho put his office in the basement
        * Sleep in a Frank Lloyd Wright home — in Rogers Park
        * Emanuel rips Rauner over pension stance
        * Madigan re-elected to lead Illinois Democratic party
        * Ebony editor-in-chief steps down


        * Vehicle hits Roseland bus stop after police chase, injures 5
        * Vehicle hits Roseland bus stop, 5 injured
        * No public money for Obama library
        * Ex-head of suburban religious organization denies sex harassment
        * FBI informant on tape hugging man before shooting him: prosecutors
        * Make graffiti taggers pay for vandalizing CTA buses, trains
        * CPS puts $100 million price tag on mayor's A/C-in-schools edict
        * Robo-calls raise Rauner-Rahm rift
        * Republican leaders say state can’t afford $100 million for Obama library
        * Oberweis apologizes as GOP leaders urge action on immigration


        * 5 taken to area hospitals after South Side police chase ends in crash
        * Two officers hit by car in East Garfield Park
        * 1 dead, 3 injured after CTA bus, van collide in South Chicago
        * Pawnshop that sold gun used to kill cop agrees to report more on sales
        * CPS mulls privatizing 3 more schools
        * Maywood man charged in weekend hit-and-run death
        * 8 wounded in separate city-wide shootings
        * CTA's new weapon in graffiti battle: suits against vandals, parents
        * Man accused of assaulting woman at Woodstock motel
        * FBI informant on parole denied bail in fatal shooting caught on video surveillance


        * Initial Obama Library Vote A "Misunderstanding"
        * The Vanishing Millionaire Tax
        * Legislator Protests Madigan As Party Chair, Won't Say Why
        * Tax Returns Revealing ... But Not Revealing Enough
        * Quinn Releases Tax Returns; Rauner's Waiting
        * Illinois Senate Joins Push For U.S. Constitutional Convention
        * Quinn Signs Law Intended To Lower Cost Of Auto Leasing
        * Mayors' group pushes for Illinois pension reform
        * Two don't-miss events this Wednesday
        * Illinois Medicaid Paying For The Dead


        * Our Opinion: Top Teen making Springfield a better place
        * Our Opinion: Computer lab a boost for the homeless
        * Lawsuit seeks investigation of hiring under Quinn
        * Madigan re-elected to lead state Democratic party
        * Madigan: 'Misunderstanding' on Obama library vote
        * Hastert, other state Republicans supporting immigration reform
        * Audit: Treasurer's office has 30 guns not given to police
        * State audit: Police training money misspent
        * Amazon takes hit in states with online tax, study says
        * Bankruptcy court trial sought over $3.8 million paid to Parsons


        * Top of the Morning, April 23, 2014
        * Daily Digest 4/23/14
        * Volunteer program will be shut down June 30
        * Data breach could affect thousands of Iowa State students, former students
        * Data breach could affect thousands of Iowa State students
        * Works set to start on Chester school
        * Iraq vet pleads guilty to assaulting girlfriend
        * Cool start with chance of rain
        * Roadwork begins today on I-88
        * Trial to start in 2007 shootings in Danville


        * The 10th District money race
        * Aurora Democrat calls out IHSA
        * Lawyers: Ill. hazing law vague, unconstitutional
        * Ill. House OKs lower-cost hunting bill for seniors
        * Quinn’s running mate takes new consulting job

        * GOP running out of time on immigration ref...
        * School board elections on April 23 Nine ca...
        * Last call for Obama on immigration reform:...
        * Gutierrez: If no immigration reform passes...
        * Gutierrez Warns GOP Obama Will Take Action...
        * Representative Gutierrez Calls on Republic...
        * Why You Should Care About Immigration - Ne...
        * House Republicans Are Stepping Up Efforts ...
        * Inside Rep. Peter Roskam's Leadership PAC ...
        * In DC, Rep. Peter Roskam invokes Springfie...

        * Loading Koch Industries Website Too Many T......
        * Maryland and DC among worst for food aller......
        * Cleveland State University to reestablish ......
        * Convicted political boss Al Sanchez runnin......
        * Candidates make last filings for local, st......

        * Illinois Lt. Gov. Simon opposes pension le......
        * Dillard Odd Man Out on Pension Deal Reaction...
        * Sen. Mark Kirk sides with Rauner on pensio......
        * Governor's race infighting threatens pensi......
        * SCHOONERS - Home of Everyone's Favorite Be......

        * Reading the Tea Party Leaves
        * Rogen Operative
        * Obama Administration Tightens Grip On Intelligence
        * Catching gangbangers on bikes?
        * You’d think it was still 20th Century by composition of immigration forum
        * CPS: Emanuel's Air Conditioning Mandate To Cost $100 Million
        * 6th Ward Alderman on CAN-TV's Political Forum
        * The Brick Stackers
        * Recipe for success
        * Court Critical Of Ohio Law Punishing Campaign Lies


        * Governor Quinn Promotes Welcome Home Illinois Program at Annual Affordable Housing Conference - Addresses Industry Leaders on State’s Improving Housing Market and New Program for First-Time Homebuyers
        * IEMA Encourages Participation in ‘America’s PrepareAthon!’ on April 30 - First National Day of Action Expected to Draw Millions of Participants
        * Redeploy Illinois Program Diverts Thousands of Youth From Prison System, Saves State $60 Million - New analysis of prison diversion initiative shows 54 percent reduction in juvenile incarceration
        * Illinois EPA Recognized for 40 Year of Graduate Public Service Internship Partnership with University of Illinois at Springfield - Agency Internship Programs Help Students Gain Real-World Knowledge of Environmental Protection and Regulations
        * Governor Quinn Proclaims Tuesday, April 22, Earth Day in Illinois - Urges People Across the State to Go Green and Continue Environmental Consciousness




            Hosted by MCS SUBSCRIBE to Capitol Fax Advertise Here Mobile Version Contact Rich Miller