The NJEA and AFT and all their local teachers unions, have a great hate for Private Schools, Charter Schools, and vouchers. First, let me define each category with a brief description.
Private Schools: A school supported by private organization, or private individuals rather than by the government. School supported by tuition, donations, and/or sponsorships by religious organizations, corporations, etc. Private schools can also offer scholarships (athletic, academic, etc) and can accept students from all over, instead of being restricted to a specific area. For the 2020 school year, there are 1,464 top private schools in New Jersey, serving 222,317 students.
Charter Schools: A publicly funded independent school established by teachers, parents, and/or community leaders. It is funded by the state but operates independently from the state operated school district in which it is located. Charter schools generally collaborate and are maintained by for-profit organizations. For the 2020 school year, there are 89 charter public schools, serving 49,447 students. Most Charter schools are not unionized, and have smaller class sizes. Charter Schools are very popular in urban environment as a safer, and better academic option than the traditional public urban school.
Vouchers: Is when the government allows parents the freedom to use the public funding meant for the
traditional public school, on private or religious schools for their students. Some vouchers even allow parents to choose other public schools in different towns, making it a true school choice decision.
Public schools have 2428 schools serving 1.37 million students, which far outnumber both Charter and Private School students.
Private Schools outscore public schools and charter schools on standardized tests. While Charter schools outscore traditional public schools in standardized tests too. This is based on averages, there are plenty of traditional public schools that score higher then both Charter and Private Schools, but by average both the Charter and Private Schools do score higher on standardized tests. There are many factors that go into this, including class sizes, student motivation, parental involvement, social-economic factors, school environment, etc. However, the bottom line is Private/Charter Schools do score better then traditional public schools on average. What does that mean private/charter schools are doing their job and helping in the education of our children.
My view is private and charter schools are the allies of traditional public schools because they are helping educate our youth! As long as our youth become educated, who cares where it is done. The charter/private schools in general offer smaller class sizes, more discipline, and environments more conducive for learning. In addition, they help the traditional public schools by lowering the numbers, which should decrease class sizes but that is not always the case. There are great public schools and districts too, but not all students can succeed in them and that is why Charter/Private Schools help those students succeed.
The push for Educational Vouchers by President Trump and his administration will only benefit the children by giving families a choice of where they want to send their students. Instead of being restricted to the town you live in, now in theory you have a choice of any school in any town, private or public. Thus finding the best fit for your student, and in theory creating competition between schools, which should make all schools better! If you want families to choose your school, you will have to make your school more attractive with better academics, safety, sports, cleanliness, special programs, etc. Vouchers will only help education, and hopefully they nationwide in the next 4 years.
The trend in education is that numbers are increasing in Private and Charter schools while decreasing in Traditional Public Schools. Teachers and staff are being let go in traditional public schools, but both private and charter schools are hiring more. Therefore, the number of teachers basically remains the same. However, the powerful liberal teacher unions are not happy! Why you ask? As unionized teachers/staff numbers decrease, and the students increasingly enroll in non-union charter and private schools, the union revenue. Each teacher working in a charter school or private does NOT PAY UNION DUES. So yes, the Unions are angered and they complain and donate to the DNC, who in returns fight against charter/private schools and vouchers! The Unions do not care about our children; they care about their bottom line, which is their revenue!
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