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Remember when privatizers came up with the “parent trigger?” It was 2010, right after the release of the charter propaganda film “Waiting for Superman,” and the “reformers” assumed that parents everywhere were longing to seize control of their public school and give it to a charter chain. They thought it was a brilliant idea to turn public schools over to the charter industry and use parents to do the deed. All that was needed was a petition that was sign ed by 50% of parents plus one, and the school could by law be privatized.
The first such bill was passed in late 2010 by the California Legislature. A charter enthusiast named Ben Austin created an organization called Parent Revolution, funded with millions from Eli Broad, Michael Bloomberg, the Waltons, and other billionaires. Parent Revolution sent organizers to poor communities to foment parent anger and collect signatures.
The producer of “Waiting for Superman” signed up star talent for another movie to promote the idea of the Parent Trigger. The movie was called “Won’t Back Down.” It failed at the box office and was the lowest grossing movie of the year.
Other states passed Parent Trigger legislation, on the assumption that parents were yearning to turn their public schools over to charter operators.
One of those states was Louisiana, which passed a Parent Trigger in 2012.
Mercedes Schneider reports here that the law is On the books, but no parent group has ever applied to turn its public school into a charter.
The only option for those who pull “the trigger” is to join the celebrated Recovery School District. Schneider lists the names of the Failing schools in the RSD.
Guess it is not that easy to fool parents into privatizing their schools.
Seven years after passage of the Parent Trigger law in California, either one or two schools have converted to charter status, and only after a bitter fight among parents about the validity of petitions. Its main effect is to divide communities.
How many millions were spent to convert one or two schools to charters? Billionaires probably for a tax write off. They don’t care.