Letter: Charter school problems mount



America's education system is struggling to bring children into the 21st century with the skills to live productive lives. Parents committed to their children's education and dedicated and skilled teachers still need that controversial ingredient -- money. But they battle corporate "schools" that know taxpayer dollars are easy pickings.

I read the July 20 story "House votes to toss No Child Left Behind law." Knowing how much the Republican Party loves corporate profits, I was sure there would be profit for them in this bill. Sure enough, in the last paragraph, which readers seldom reach, there it was -- "The expansion of high-quality charter schools would be encouraged." This is an invitation to raid school district dollars by corporate "management companies" of charter schools. Washington's charter school law allows them. Here is what happens:

In Oregon, Tim King and Norm Donohoe, director and president of a chain of charter schools, have been accused of scamming the state out of $17 million. In Texas, Ignite Charter Schools scammed $900,000. The number of charter schools involved in stealing taxpayer dollars are too numerous to list.

But money isn't the only thing stolen. With alarming frequency, charter schools are involved in cheating on test scores and falsifying attendance records.

If you think this won't happen here, think again.

Celia Louderback