Thursday, January 7, 2010

Gloucester Daily Times Editorial

An editorial in today’s Gloucester Daily Times analyzes the many troubling aspects of the approval process utilized this year to consider charter school applications in the Commonwealth. I have been engaged steadfastly in efforts to investigate what has occurred in this situation, particularly with regard to the granting of a charter for a proposed school in Gloucester.

Persistence has yielded some troubling information, which emphasizes not only the need for the Governor to take action in this instance but also for legislative safeguards to be installed to ensure the integrity of the approval process, which up until now has earned national recognition for its past excellence.

Decisions about the proper education of our students must be handled with transparency, accountability and sound reasoning. I remain committed to the inclusion of these qualities in the process.

The editorial is posted below, as well as a summary of the amendments which I have added to the Senate version of a pending education bill, S.2205.

Gloucester Daily Times...Opinion Corruption Leaves No Choice but to Void Charter

Amendments inserted into the Senate version of the Education Reform Bill, S.2205:

Evaluative Materials:

- Requires the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education to provide to the board a comprehensive written summary of all materials evaluating a charter school application no less than three days before a vote on that application.


- Standardizes the process for the waiver of any charter school regulations, and requires a 2/3 vote of the board of education for any waiver.

Written Findings:

- Requires that the board of education make written findings that any approved charter school meets all the legal requirements for the granting of a charter.