Now we have a federal charter school policy that actually calls for high poverty quotas of 60 percent minimum of poor children to win the federal grants to fund “successful” charter expansion. This is exactly the opposite of what needs to be done, if charter schools are going to continue at all. They should, in fact, have a cap of 40 percent of low-income children, so that the social capital that James Coleman and hundreds of other scholars have shown to be so important over the years can help to equalize the punishing effects of poverty, particularly when poverty is concentrated. Why is this segregating incentive to contain poor children in the guidance for winning federal grants for schools?
I'm becoming even more conscious of how much more favorable RI charter school law still is than other states, but we could do a better job of taking advantage of it.