The latest in the half-cent sales tax referendum to fund the reconstruction of Jacksonville’s schools comes in this news story: the School Board is investigating the hiring of an outside law firm to litigate the many roadblocks the mayor and City Council, driven by the Civic Council, a non-elected, secretive group of wealthy and their toadies in the city, have thrown in their way.
The school board is not about to fold. And now, because Grumpy Old Teacher (GOT) knows you want it, here’s the song.
GOT woke up this morning thinking about the sales-tax referendum and for some strange reason, this image popped into his head:
What if the superintendent of schools (Duval County, FL: a/k/a known as Jacksonville) called the City Council’s bluff? They keep demanding answers to questions that have already been answered. What are they really up to?
A fellow blogger reports the strong, yet true words of a school board member for a city council on which he served until term limited.
GOT would love for the superintendent to call their bluff.
“We are closing two schools this year. The Florida Commissioner of Education, Richard Corcoran, demanded that we turn them over to a charter school, despite the fact that the law, Florida statutes, give us a choice of charter, an external manager, or closing the school.
“Maybe school choice isn’t really a choice. We only get a choice if we make the choice that has already been chosen for us.
#Chartrand #CivicCouncil #RonDeSantis #RichardCorcoran #FLDOE
“Today I offer you a choice. Beyond the two schools we must close this year, we have at least 20 schools near the same point given the current Florida statutes.
“Let us have the half-cent sales tax. We will prioritize (as you demand) the rebuilding of schools whose grades place them in danger of leaving our control. We will rebuild those schools and then turn them over to a charter operator of your choice!
“Currently, that is the IDEA charter school chain out of Texas.
“Yes, we will build it and they will come.
“We will take those schools, rebuild them, and turn them over. The charters will not have to compete against us; we will disappear from those neighborhoods. They will have free rein.
“But the charters must agree to the following provisions in their contracts with the Duval County School Board:
- They will maintain the neighborhood boundaries for every school we turn over. That is, they must accept every student that lives within the school boundaries. Parents who move in during the school year, say in January, the charter must accept their children and enroll them. Counseling out children for any reason will be a cause for negating the charter contract.
- They will provide services for every IEP and 504 plan for every child. Again, counseling out parents by saying, “We can’t do that,” will be a cause for negating the contract. They must take every kid and do their best as every traditional public school in the district must do.
- The district has already provided the campus. The charter must agree that the district will provide transportation, meals, and maintenance for the buildings and accept that the district will subtract the cost of doing so from the state formula of allocation of district funds that they receive.”
How can a charter-lover resist? They get everything they want and all they have to do is live up to their promises.