Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Rahm sputters through defense of new charters

The Mayor sounds downright goofy as he tries to defend his hand-picked school board's vote to open new charter schools in the vicinity of the 50 schools they closed.

From the Tribune:
“That’s not how this city in the past has looked at it, and in the future, and this is in areas primarily, not exclusively, where there’s overcrowding, which we have also a challenge,” said Emanuel, before bringing up his frequent argument that charter schools are about giving parents more choices.
What'd he say? Is he channeling his predecessor, Mayor Malaprop?

As long as they had him jabbering, I wonder why the reporters didn't ask him to justify the newly-approved Moody Bible Institute-connected charter, opening within a mile of four schools closed for "underutilization" on the west side? I'd like to hear him babble his way through that explanation.

Or how about, "Hey Rahm, what do you think about the State Board's approval of more Concept Charters tied to reclusive Turkish billionaire cleric, Fethullah Gulen, even after your own board rejected their proposal?"

From DNAInfo: 
The "Gulen Movement" has a special focus on establishing charter schools, which act as conduits to get Gulen loyalists from Turkey into America through work visas, according to researcher Sharon Higgins. 
"The whole thing is filled with international intrigue ... and it just so happens that it's been placed in my backyard," said Bill Drew, a McKinley Park activist who hosted a broadcast of a webinar on Concept Schools and other similarly-run charter schools throughout the country.
According to the Sun-Times, powerful Illinois House Speaker Mike Madigan took four trips to Turkey as a guest of the Niagara Foundation and the Turkish American Chamber of Commerce.  Madigan paid for his travel but meals and hotels were covered by those two groups, the newspaper reported. Those ties have created suspicion about political influence in the highly charged debate over charter schools in Illinois.
Please reporters. Get him on record as we head for 2015.

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