NAACP doubts that school choice helps black children

By Amber Randall

School choice does not solve the problem of helping black children get a better education, the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People said Wednesday.

NAACP leaders gathered at a conference to release a report on the organization’s views on charter schools and what recommendations they have to make charter schools work for black children, reports the Washington Post.

The report, which came almost a year after the group called for a complete moratorium on charter schools, drew from a task force of 12 that talked about charter schools and the education with various people at hearings in seven cities.

The report suggested that charters schools operate under more regulations, and called for all charter schools that run for profit to be shut down.

“While high-quality, accountable, and accessible charters can contribute to educational opportunity, by themselves, even the best charters are not a substitute for more stable, adequate and equitable investments in public education” the task force wrote in the report.

The report also called for more accountability in charter schools. To achieve this, the NAACP task force suggested that charter schools admit all students and try to keep the ones that have academic or behavior problems. They also want all teachers who work in charter schools to be certified.

Some school choice advocates came out against the report, saying they were left out of the NAACP task force’s listening tour.

“It is surprising and disappointing that the NAACP has not listened to African American families who have seen the impact of charter schools on their communities,” said Vanessa Descalzi, a spokeswoman with the National Alliance of Public Charter Schools.

The report takes a softer stance on charter schools than the NAACP’s previous position on them. The group called for a freeze on charter schools in October 2017, saying that they were going to fight against legislation that helped or funded private and charter schools.

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5 thoughts on “NAACP doubts that school choice helps black children

  1. Re: “School choice does not solve the problem of helping black children get a better education, the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People said Wednesday.”

    Oh, really? Consider the case of this NAACP board member.

    In 2011, Aubrey C. Hooper, was elected to the Desoto Texas School District Board. Interestingly, the Desoto Texas School District promotes Magnet Academies. Magnet Academies, like Charter Schools, are publically funded specialty schools that emphasize a particular educational focus such as engineering, science, technology or the arts. Parents and their children choose to apply to Magnet Academies. Enrollments are limited. Magnet Schools don’t accept all students. Transportation to the Magnet School is not provided but is the responsibility of the parent or guardian.

    For all intent and purpose, Desoto Texas School District Magnet Academies are School Choice institutions operating as Burlington’ Vermont’s Magnet Schools do and much as do many of Vermont’s independent schools under ‘tuitioning’.

    Today, Mr. Hooper is Assistant Secretary of the National Board of Directors of the NAACP.

    So, what does he think about school choice today? If his local “… magnet school opens doors of opportunity and sparks the imagination of students, preparing them to become responsible citizens in a global society”, what do the other schools in Mr. Hooper’s school district do? Why would parent’s choose them? The Desoto Texas School District is 74% African American. If Mr. Hooper really thinks school choice doesn’t solve the problem of helping black children get a better education, why would he advocate for school choice Magnet Schools in his hometown?

  2. If school choice offers no opportunity for a better education, why is it flourishing, and why are a major portion of the participants black????

  3. I have observed that most of charter schools in Memphis are in the black neighborhoods. Most are for profit and I am not convinced they are any better than the public schools. Many have closed because of financial problems.

  4. Fine, NAACP officials make sure you keep your own kids in those failing public schools, but stay out of the way of others who don’t have their heads up the rear ends of the teacher’s union and who understand that the only way out of the problems so many face today is with a better education.
    What do you want to bet that the “leaders” of the NAACP all have their own kids in high priced private schools?

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