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A few words on advocating for public schools

June 19, 2013

If we want to advocate for public schools, we need to take better control of our language. We have conceded too much vocabulary to the charter lobby already.

1. There are public schools, and there are charter schools. I wasn’t born yesterday and I know a public school when I see one, and charter schools are not public schools. Charter lobbyists point to the legal definition like Al Gore screaming “There was no controlling legal authority!!” I’m not playing that anymore. I might be willing to compromise on “public charter schools.”

2. Traditional Public Schools is right out. Public schools ARE traditional. Use “public schools” instead.

3. When speaking in the political context it’s charter lobbyists, not “charter advocates” or “charter supporters” or “charter movement.” And they really are lobbyists: real registered, paid lobbyists. With 15% charter and 85% public school students, the charter lobby is the definition of a special interest and a vocal minority.

4. Charter reform. They keep using that word. I do not think it means what they think it means. In the context of HB 165, speak of charter deregulation, unless someone has a better word.

5. Accountability. They keep using that word, etc etc… I would also use deregulation.

6. Autonomy – once again, deregulation.

7. Crippling regulations – use oversight.

Any others? Please post your suggestions in the comments section.

  1. June 19, 2013 at 4:20 pm

    I love … “Charter Lobbyists”… What a precise and accurate definition… James Joyce would be proud!…

  2. kilroysdelaware
    June 20, 2013 at 1:35 pm

    Reblogged this on Kilroy's delaware.

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