Thursday, August 13, 2009
Checks for "Public" Charter Schools
We just had to write a check for more than $700 to Lusher Charter School in order to cover Kalypso's "fees" for her first year of high school. These include test taking fees for advances classes, fees for being in an arts program at a school that is allegedly focussed on the arts, and various other expenses. This is of course on top of having to buy hundreds of dollars worth of supplies for the classroom, and having to write a check for Gilgamesh's "fees" as well. While we thankfully can afford these charges, many families can't, and I'm sad to see access to quality free public education slip away. Moreover, Lusher has a famous crawfish boil every spring, and I believe it is one of the largest fundraising events in the city. I wish Lusher was more transparent about how much money they raised and how they will spend the funds. But with the charter school model, salaries for administrators increase dramatically, while parents and teachers are asked to do considerably more work to keep the quality school running. Some parents such as ourselves fought pretty hard to get our kids into a quality "public" school like Lusher, and I've noticed with many Lusher parents a tendency to avoid complaining out of fear and other reasons. The feeling is that while our kids are there, we need to fully support the school. I need to do some research to find out if families at RSD schools need to write checks as well, and what happens if the parents are not able to provide the funds. Anyway, I sure wish K-12 education was a quality product entirely funded by taxes, but that is apparently crazy socialism talk.