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Charter Schools, GERM (Global Education Reform Movement), Privatisation of state schools, USA Schools

Charter boarding schools for the poor – the latest in a long line of morally dubious education reformer ideas

social-engineering-basics.1280x600The New York Times is reporting the latest in a long line of morally dubious education reformer ideas – taking children from low socio-economic backgrounds into full time boarding school, the logic being that if poverty has such an impact on students and the student’s family is poor, then the solution is to take the child out of their family environment.

The NY Times reports that Carl Paladino “envisions a charter boarding school in Buffalo where students as young as first or second grade would be assured proper meals, uniforms, after-school tutoring and activities.”

Why, I would ask, can those things not be provided in the current system? Why are they dangled as a carrot that can only be had if you give your child into a boarding school system? Imagine being a parent wanting the best for your child hearing that your option is no help or hand over your child. Repulsive.

The idea is supported by Tanika Shedrick, a former charter school dean who, of course, wants to open one of the schools. Possible motives for that interest might be summed up in this quote from the NY Times:

[Shendrick] estimates the per-student cost at $20,000 to $25,000 per year, to be paid for with public funding and fundraising.

New York’s traditional charter school allocation is about $12,000 per student.

Interestingly, research done on this model, undertaken by the National Bureau of Economic Research, outlines the potential gains students make but has no mention of the human cost.  The report notes that  “SEED schools have an extended school day, provide extensive after-school tutoring for student who need support…” and goes on to note that “[w]hether or not the total benefits of attending SEED outweigh the costs can be known [only] with the passage of time“.

follow the moneySo, on one hand we have state schools being closed early due to lack of funds, and on the other hand we have proposals such as this, despite no clear indications of success, despite huge costs, and with no research on the impact on the students or their families.

It is also striking that money can be found to fund private charter schools, but not fund state schools fairly and properly in the first place.

Yes poverty has an effect on educational outcomes – a big effect – but we have to ask why anyone would think that, rather than dealing with issues of poverty and the underlying system that creates it, or even funding state schools properly, it is preferable to remove children from their families.

– Dianne Khan


Public Boarding School _ the Way to Solve Educational Ills? – New York Times (Firewalled – non-firewalled version at Trib Live, link below)

Buffalo weighs public boarding school proposals for at-risk kids – Trib Live

The Potential of Urban Boarding Schools for the Poor: Evidence from SEED∗ Vilsa E. Curto† Roland G. Fryer, Jr.‡ October 14, 2012

About Save Our Schools NZ

"One needs to be slow to form convictions, but once formed they must be defended against the heaviest odds." Gandhi


6 thoughts on “Charter boarding schools for the poor – the latest in a long line of morally dubious education reformer ideas

  1. Wait a minute…Did you say New York or Detroit? This story sounds all too familiar.

    By the way, this “dreamer” has since worked her way into the position of Deputy Superintendent, heading the School Reform Office v


    Posted by Melba Baldwin | April 27, 2015, 8:57 pm
  2. THe hubris and condescension among white people who dismiss the need of familiy for poor children and that these schools can raise thesse children better is astounding. It’s really no different than when same type of white people who ripped Native AMerican children from their families to recondition them in boarding schools over a century ago. As far as I can tell that didn’t work and Native AMericans are still living in abject poverty in most parts of this country.It’s all part and parcel of the Eva Moskowitz, TFA, blah, blah blah….we know better because we are white and rich crowd. You know, maybe there is a lesson in the STEM/STEAM focus…no history lessons…these people all seemed to miss these lessons. Here’s an oldie but goodie…it’s poverty stupid.

    Liked by 1 person

    Posted by Rosemarie Jensen | April 27, 2015, 11:30 pm
  3. Reblogged this on stopcommoncorenys and commented:
    Good piece. Look how what’s going on in Ny in Ed is being mocked all over the world. Isn’t that pathetic?


    Posted by SCCNY | April 28, 2015, 11:22 pm
  4. The money per child should be put forward to more teachers in schools and this wouldn’t work for some of our cultures in Aotearoa as Te Reo Maori me nga Tikanga come from the Whanau, Marae, Iwi, Hapuu.


    Posted by Te Ruru Thatcher | April 29, 2015, 6:26 pm
  5. Why the black community isn’toutraged is beyond me. This the ultimate in racism. It tells them they can’t parent and that they can’t raise their own children. It’s like running an orphanage. This is not the solution. How about working with the families?


    Posted by Veronica | April 29, 2015, 9:45 pm

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