Op-Ed: Misuse of Charter School Funds Portends Issues with Vouchers
Date Posted: 2/07/2023
Northside (20) ISD Superintendent Brian Woods, president of the Texas School Alliance, and Cypress-Fairbanks ISD Superintendent Mark Henry have a powerful op-ed in the Feb. 6 San Antonio Express-News. The opinion piece—written in reaction to a recent Hearst Newspapers investigation of charter school use of land purchases—only scratches the surface on the danger of sending taxpayer dollars into the world with limited public oversight and accountability.
As Woods and Henry state, many charter schools manage taxpayer dollars and educate students well. But the charter schools whose operators have founds ways to scheme the system do so to the detriment of the educators they employ and the students they serve. As they write: “ … charter schools lack the same systems of public oversight and accountability as traditional school districts, which are governed by locally elected trustees who are ultimately responsible to voters and taxpayers in their communities.”
The message of this op-ed is particularly potent when the governor and lieutenant governor are pushing plans to implement a private school voucher program that would send even more taxpayer dollars into the world with even less oversight and accountability. “The opportunities for fraud that run through the Texas charter school experiment would metastasize if Texas began to send tax dollars to schools with even less accountability in place,” Woods and Henry write.
In other words, one doesn’t need a crystal ball to see the damage vouchers would do. The results are already clear. You need only look at the fiscal abuses in voucher programs in other states and in charter schools right here in Texas.
Read “Commentary: Charter school abuses a red flag for vouchers” in the Feb. 6 San Antonio Express-News (login required after free article limit hit).
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