Stan Karp

The Long Reach And Deep Pockets of Corporate Education Reform

For several years, I’ve been tracking the path of corporate school reform in two very different communities as it moves from city to suburb in my home state of New Jersey. One story comes from Newark, New Jersey’s largest city and the target of a nationally watched campaign to remake a high-poverty, high-needs urban district into a new education marketplace, transformed by charter chains, “venture philanthropy,” and various forms of “school choice” that treat parents as customers seeking services instead of citizens with rights. The other story is about my hometown, Montclair, a diverse community that has been long known as a model of high quality, integrated public education. Montclair, too, has been the target of a reform offensive, much less destabilizing than the one under way in Newark, but strikingly similar in many respects.

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What Happens When a City's Public Schools Vanish?

By next fall, New Orleans will have only five public schools—those operated by the Orleans Parish School Board. Everything else will be charters. The post-Katrina path to almost 100 percent charter education began with the post-storm shutdown of the city’s struggling public schools and the firing (recently declared illegal) of some 7,500 unionized teachers and other school employees, predominantly African American women. The assault was accelerated by a massive infusion of foundation and entrepreneurial investment in new charter schools, and years of state and federally supported deregulation and privatization.

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The Problem With the Common Core

This is a revised version of a talk on the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) delivered in Portland, Oregon, Sept. 20, 2013. The CCSS have been adopted by 46 states and are currently being implemented in school districts throughout the United States.

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How Charter Schools Are Undermining the Future of Public Education

Somewhere along the way, nearly every teacher dreams of starting a school. I know I did.

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