From Carmen Dixon, an educator and community organizer living in Harlem, New York City, The New York Amsterdam News, May 22-May 28, 2014

Corporate Charter School Hijackers Destroying Public Education


New York City has become a hotbed for education reformers making promises to ready Black and Brown children for college and their careers, even as young as kindergarten. Wealthy philanthropists have committed to transforming failing urban public schools into world-class learning centers. Their strategy? Use privately managed charters, vouchers and frequent standardized tests to measure student achievement and teacher quality.

This strategy would seemingly yield schools that have the freedom to experiment, increase available options, assess students and hold teachers accountable. At least that’s what we’re told. In reality, the results of school reform have been devastating to communities of color.

As an organizer, I’ve learned that people act out of self-interest—what is most important to them. So during my…

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