On December 23, 2009 the Herald-Leader reported under the title above that Kentucky’s application for ‘Race To The Top’ funding from the federal government would not include the introduction of charter schools in Kentucky.
We see several problems with the article.
For one thing, if the Herald-Leader got it right, Kentucky Commissioner of Education Terry Holliday isn’t well informed on Kentuckians’ opinion about charter schools. The Herald-Leader writes, “Holliday added that he’s not sure there is widespread support for charter schools.”
We have two public opinion polls that say different. One was conducted for the Bluegrass Institute by staff at Western Kentucky University. Another was recently conducted by the Friedman Foundation with support from the Bluegrass Institute. Both surveys found that Kentuckians definitely want more parent choice and that there is interest in charter schools here.
The 2007 “School Choice Survey” from Dr. Larry Caillouet and his Western Kentucky University team (Caillouet, Larry, “School Choice Survey,” Bluegrass Institute for Public Policy Solutions, Bowling Green, Kentucky, April 30, 2007) asked this question:
“Charter schools are a form of school choice in which schools are run by the principal, teachers and parents without the regulation of teachers unions and state education departments. Do you feel charter schools would be good for Kentucky education?” Here’s how Kentuckians responded:
The Friedman survey uncovered similar reactions.
I guess Commissioner Holliday isn’t reading us as carefully as he needs to. If he can come up with some scientifically conducted surveys to counter ours, we’d love to see them.
There’s another problem of a technical nature with the Herald-Leader’s article. It gets our name wrong. We are NOT the Bluegrass CENTER for Public Policy Solutions. We remain – as we have from our inception six years ago – the Bluegrass Institute for Public Policy Solutions.
We contacted the Herald-Leader before Christmas with a request to correct the error. When I checked a few minutes ago, the original error remained in the web version.
At this point, both a correction and an in print and on line apology would be appreciated.
I hope the newspaper did a better job getting the rest of the article correct.