T-SPLOST proponents are up to their old tricks again, starting with the preamble to the charter school referendum. And Bert “Little Goose” Brantley, formerly of Lowndes County, defends that wording.
Paul Crawley wrote for 11alive.com September 12 2012, Is Charter Schools Amendment wording biased?
Here we go again, apparently another ballot issue with questions about whether it’s worded fairly.
First, it was the July 31st transportation sales tax issue, known as T-SPLOST, which Georgia voters rejected overwhelmingly.
Opponents howled when they found out the ballot preamble wording promised to “create jobs” and “relieve traffic congestion”.
Now, opponents of a November ballot question are also crying foul.
It reads, “Provides for improving student achievement and parental involvement through more public charter school options.”
How can the preamble say that?
Like T-SPLOST, it’s a hot issue that has non-partisan supporters and opponents.
Opponent Elizabeth Hooper told 11 Alive on Wednesday that she believes the Charter Schools Amendment preamble is also rigged to get “yes” votes.
“It’s absolutely biased,” she said, “Who wouldn’t be for improving student achievement?”
Hooper points out that the bill authorizing the amendment vote doesn’t mention either “improving student achievement” or “parental involvement”.
“To say that is going to happen is a lie,” she added.
Call in the Little Goose to goose it along!
Bert Brantley, spokesman for the pro amendment group Families for Better Public Schools, told 11 Alive News a recent study by the Governor’s Office of Student Achievement proves they make a difference.
“I think it’s factual,” he said of the preamble wording.
“We’ve got proof that state charter schools perform better than the schools in the districts where those charters are located,” Brantley said.
“We know that parental involvement increases in charter schools because parents are on the board; they’re more involved,” he added.
Really? Where is this proof? His Families for Better Public Schools website is the same as GeorgiaHope2012.com that I already examined in Charter school bait and switch. If it’s got proof on there, it’s cleverly hidden among all the flashy graphics and attempts at emotional appeal.
That’s a wild goose chase anyway, whether charter schools are better or worse. That’s not what the referendum is about. It’s about authorizing an appointed state committee to force charter schools on local communities whose school boards don’t want them, and then using local sales and property taxes to pay more per student to charter schools than to public schools. No wonder it’s the same old T-SPLOST pushers now pushing this referendum! That referendum was about giving the state control over local sales taxes, and so is this one. It’s not really about charter schools; it’s not about education; it’s about letting an appointed state committee funnel local tax dollars to private companies.
Vote no on the charter school referendum in November.