School Wars: The empire strikes back

I’m not going to sugar-coat it: the charter school bill is in trouble, thanks to these Superintendents and some fumbling by the Republicans. The Superintendents are waging political holy war against legislators in their districts. A few, such as Representatives Arnold and Massengill, are wavering. See, part of Massengill’s district cuts through Desoto County, Special K’s turf. Want to get re-elected? Better kiss the ring. They want to exempt school districts rated “successful” or above from charter school legislation. Thus, a school district such as Hattiesburg, rated successful but having a high school that is on academic watch, has an overall graduation rate of 48%, and only 33% graduation rate for male students, would be “protected” from charter schools if they have their way. They tend to represent school districts such as Desoto, Madison, and Rankin that are doing quite well while ignoring the needs of the rest of the state.