Biden Administration Defends New Rulings Against Charter Schools
By Jessica Marie Baumgartner
School choice has been a topic of debate for years. As the public education system continues to fail students, many families are unable to afford private school tuition – even with financial aid. Charter schools have offered parents the opportunity to send their children to the schools of their choosing, but the Biden Administration is working to pass new regulations which they claim were designed to prevent fraud and wasted spending.
According to a U.S. Department of Education top official, some $174 million dollars was wasted on charter schools that never opened, or closed within just a few years of operation. About 15% of charter schools led to these expenses and The Biden Administration claims that the new regulations were designed to crack down on unnecessary spending for educational options that do not serve communities. Yet, many are wondering that if this is the goal, why are the new proposed regulations offering federal money and approved charter school status only to institutions that are furthering identity politics in the classroom?
Charter schools serve mainly minority students. These are often located in highly populated areas with failing public school districts. As they are already serving underrepresented students, this new push for more equity is doing more harm than good, according to many charter school parents.
The Biden Administration is pushing Critical Race Theory and gender identity exploration ideologies into schools through Executive Order 13985. This piece of legislation works to further equity advancement so that all students achieve the same outcome no matter how hard they do or don’t work. Under this order, The Biden Administration has awarded grants to schools that push divisive political rhetoric in the classroom which allows race-based practices to be introduced so that students are judged based on their heritage instead of their character. In addition, schools will not receive funding for their free lunch programs for underprivileged students unless they allow transgender students to select the bathrooms and locker rooms of their choice, regardless of how dangerous this can be for natural-born females.
In addition, Biden has already spoken about his bias against charter schools. While campaigning in 2020, he admitted, “I am not a fan of charter schools,” in South Carolina. His argument was that these institutions draw funding away from public schools, but if public schools are designed to serve the people, and the people want more options, then it is not up to the federal government to deter these education alternatives from flourishing. The American Federation for Children revealed that recent poll results show that 72% of Americans support school choice. It found that the majority of democrats, republicans, and independent voters want school choice, and this is also true across racial demographics. An overwhelming number of black Americans, Asian Americans, Hispanic Americans, and white Americans support school choice.
Whether The Biden Administration acknowledges it or not, the people support charter schools and gaining access to more education options. Punishing independent institutions that serve minority students will not further equity initiatives or save the failing public school system. Until the U.S. Department of Education, and the communities they serve work to solve the main issues turning families against public schools, no amount of funding will sway them. Biden Administration Defends New Rulings Against Charter Schools