D.C. Charter Debate: Roundup of Recent Conversations

Via WhiteHouse.Gov: Latin American Montessori Bilingual Charter School in Washington, D.C.

Via WhiteHouse.Gov: Latin American Montessori Bilingual Charter School in Washington, D.C.

If you’ve ever read the About page of this blog, you know that we value spirited debate among our team members.

Last week was a great illustration, with a healthy back-and-forth about what percentage of schools in D.C. should be charter schools. Here’s the context and summary in case you missed it:

argue that a healthy balance of charter schools and traditional district schools is best for D.C.

2.) At the Flypaper blog, Bellwether Partner Andy Smarick opposes what he calls the “pausing of D.C. chartering” and writes that Pearson and McKoy’s position “reflects an unwarranted deference to the status quo.”

3.) Here at Ahead of the Heard, Bellwether Principal (and D.C. member) Sara Mead defends the op-ed: “The implication of Scott’s and Skip’s argument is not that D.C. should slow the pace of charter growth, nor that the city should aim for a specific percentage ‘balance’ between DCPS and charters.”

4.) Smarick writes back: “I don’t know how anyone could not interpret this as a call to slow or halt charter growth.”

5.) Over at the Flypaper blog, Pearson and McKoy write that their op-ed “does not signal a slowdown in PCSB’s authorizing” or in “efforts to support growth by high-performing charters already in D.C.”

6.) The Washington Post recaps the “hot-button issue” that has resurfaced since the original op-ed.

We look forward to more robust debates from the variety of voices on our team.