Georgia PTA To Host Educational Summit On Charter School Bill

The summit will discuss the upcoming charter school referendum on the Nov. 6 ballot.

The Georgia PTA will be on hand Tuesday night to discuss the upcoming referendum on charter schools voters will consider on the Nov. 6 general election ballot. 

The summit will be held Tuesday at 7 p.m. at Clark Creek STEM Academy. The school is located at 3219 Hunt Road in Acworth. 

Sally Fitzgerald, educational policy consultant for Georgia PTA, will be the guest speaker at the event and will discuss H.B. 1162, the enabling legislation that put the question on the ballot.

Voters will consider whether the state can bypass local boards of education in approving charter schools. If approved, it would amend the Georgia constitution to allow the state to approve charter schools. The Georgia PTA has come out in opposition to the amendment.

Kimberly Carson, the legislative chair for Chapman Intermediate and Clark Creek Elementary PTA organizations, said the summit serves as an "opportunity to come and learn more and get educated on House Bill 1162."

Carson, who is also the vice president of Chapman Intermediate's PTA, added discussions with some in the community propelled the need for the summit to take place. She noted some people react with a "deer caught in headlights" look whenever they first learn about the referendum. 

"I just think people don't know about it," she said. "That's the feeling I get. They don't really understand what's going on." 


Jim Beam October 09, 2012 at 03:01 PM
Maria, if not for that charter school, those STEM schools being opened wouldn't exist. I wonder what criteria for being accepted into one of those allegedly-public STEM schools is. Looks like first-come, first-served. Not very 'public', since not every student can attend and likely preferential treatment is given to those students who are cozy to certain PTAs or school admins. But they're still a step in the right direction and only exist due to the competition being provided by the single charter academy. Imagine the choices & changes that would occur if there were more than 1 charter school.
Frank Jones October 09, 2012 at 04:42 PM
FWIW...For many pro-charter parents, this is about their desire for an alternative to traditional schools - choice if you will - and their perception that anything is better than traditional schools. It's about their children...their children only. For many of the anti-Amendment people, it's about the state creating an additional bureaucracy, austerity cuts, disproportionate state funding of charter schools, lies & misinformation by pro-charter groups & legislators, corporate greed, and the dismantling of the traditional public school system. For those who argue that there is great demand for charters as proven by the waiting lists...there isn't. Cherokee County has 39,000 students and only about 1,000 go to CCA (i.e. 2%). Even if the waiting list were 1,000 (it isn't), the total demand would be 4% of the population. Not exactly overwhelming demand!
Kathleen A. October 09, 2012 at 05:33 PM
Maria, I couldn't agree with you more. Instead of filtering my tax dollars into a for profit company that so happens to run schools, we should keep that money in the current schools and invest in IMPROVING what we already have. It just makes more sense!
Jim Beam October 09, 2012 at 06:54 PM
Kathleen, we've been doing that for years: I.E Repeating the same thing and hoping for different results. It's called 'insanity'. The traditional public school model has been tried and not-fixed in GA for decades now. Continuing to throw money at it and hope it changes is naive. Nothing will ever change with GA public schooling so I am voting YES to 1162 and YES to 21st-century education.
Roswell Parent October 26, 2012 at 11:55 PM
I'm all for reforming public schools so our children are prepared to work in a rapidly evolving technical society. Unfortunately, change will take decades if we expect it to come from the people who are working within the "system". Just like in business, we need a "disruptive technology" to change the paradigm of education. Charters are the closest thing I know to that, though there are other hopeful ways... like the Khan Academy on YouTube. I'm voting YES.


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