A Letter to John Oliver from Appletree Charter Schools Founder Jack McCarthy:
I’m a fan of the show and I thought your report on charter schools was devastating. It would also be reasonable for your team to report on the ineptitude, corruption and self-dealing that takes place in public schools that operate under the district governance and finance model. That is, after all, what led to the creation of charter schools in the first place.
You may not be aware — in this year of grotesque, daily, pathological lying at the highest levels of our political discourse — how your report is being used as a cudgel against thousands of courageous, mission-driven educators dedicated to improving the lives and outcomes of our most disadvantaged children. Their work is hard enough. It doesn’t have to be disparaged further in such a ham-handed, easily-manipulated fashion.
Have your staff explore how your report is being used in a nation-wide war against charter schools. If this is what you intended, then I’m not a fan any longer. If this is not what you intended, make it right.
I hope you will take the opportunity to examine the ineptitude, corruption and self-dealing of some of the leaders of the AFT and NEA.
In Washington, DC, several years ago, the leader of the Washington Teachers Union was sent to jail for stealing members’ dues, as detailed in this Washington Post report. There is a robust amount of material to work with. Don’t limit it to charters because most are making a tremendous difference in the lives of children. The ones that don’t, close. And that’s a good thing.
President and CEO of Appletree Early Learning Public Charter School
Jack McCarthy is a pioneer in the charter school