Charter school deserves a fair hearing

(Appearing in Daily News, Letters to the Editor 8/28/06)
I know some of the professional educators who have been spending countless hours putting together a charter for a new public school in Moscow (the Palouse Prairie School). When it came time to present their charter to the public Aug. 17, I was disappointed to hear the school district’s response. While it is understandable that they would not welcome a new entry into what was once their exclusive territory, I was hoping for a less biased and more open-minded attitude. Instead, I witnessed a stream of school district employees testifying about completely irrelevant details about day-to-day school management – details not at all relevant to the requirements (clearly set out by the state of Idaho) for approval of the charter.

It got to the point that I would not have been surprised to hear criticism about the school’s Monday lunch menu or where they propose the students hang their hats. One employee brought up some long-refuted data concerning the low ISAT scores of the now defunct Renaissance Charter School (it turns out that the school actually had raised the scores of previously poor performing district students).

Why doesn’t the district just come out and say it didn’t want the competition and be done with it instead of playing silly games. I understand that the state will have the ultimate say in approving the charter anyway.

Harry Moore, Moscow

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