Yikes. Just when we thought it was safe to discuss charter schools, a letter writer (TNT, 3-29) calls them “a scam,” former Tacoma School Board member Kim Golding urges Tacoma not to “dirty its hands” and current board member Debbie Winskill isn’t interested because – with charters new in Washington – “there are too many unknowns” (TNT, 3-29).
The fact that 42 other states have charters? Doesn’t matter, apparently. We prefer parochial education.
Tacoma School District is rightly proud of being declared an “innovation zone” by the state, but innovation means disrupting the status quo. It means embracing risk. It means freeing ourselves from the fear something might go wrong.
Let’s hope the people truly committed to innovation can see past – well, the past – and take some calculated risks. All kinds of changes are coming to public education; if school boards want to prove their worth they should lead the disruption, not fight it every step of the way.