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More Talk about Charter Schools

By Lawayne Childrey | Published 03 Nov 2010 11:26am | comments
Parents for Public Schools held a group discussion on charter schools in Jackson Wednesday

The topic of charter schools has dominated the local and national conversation around public schools for months now. MPB's Lawayne Childrey takes look at the issue in Mississippi.

Before Monique Davis moved to Jackson she and her children had become accustomed to some of the advantages of their Chicago Charter school.

"The United States is becoming more brown as we speak. We need to get them ready to speak Spanish, that's a reality that they're gonna have to deal with. We can teach multiplication tables through drumming. We need to use what's culturally relevant to us to teach our children different concepts."

While Davis says charter schools won’t fix many of the systemic problems, Kevin Gilbert, President of the Mississippi Association of Educators says there are certain elements that could work well in public systems.

"Well public school can have a contract with a parent. As a parent we expect you to do this and this with your child each night for school and as a student they have contracts with a student, we expect you to do this. Now what you can’t do in a public school in which many of the charter schools are able to do if you don’t live up to the contract you signed with the charter school they put you out the school. We can’t afford, we can’t put children out in public school."

Although the reviews on charter schools vary, Ellen Collins with the Children Defense Fund likes the idea that charter school teachers have the freedom to think outside the box.

"How do we eliminate any policies or barriers in the public school systems that prevent teachers from being creative and innovative? We know that all children don't learn the same way so we can’t follow a cookie cutter system or a curriculum."

Collins says at the end of the day the most important part of a child's learning process is what he or she receives in the pre-k years. Lawayne Childrey MPB News.

 

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Parents for Public Schools held a group discussion on charter schools in Jackson Wednesday


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