Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden said private charter schools will not receive a penny of federal money.
In a dialogue with Lily Eskelen Garcia, president of the National Education Association, Biden was firm in his resolve not to give funding to charter schools.
Garcia noted, “There are lots of people who think there are other ways to solve all of these problems and NEA members have pushed back against what we think are very misguided school reforms, like charter schools. Regularly now we’ve seen families and communities who will join us in fighting to save that neighborhood public school. You know how we feel about charter schools.”
The Democratic presidential nominee agreed. Biden said, “I will not — there will be no federal dollars — I’m not Betsy DeVos — nor will my, my Secretary of Education be anything like her in terms of her attitudes about public schools. No privately funded charter school will receive or private charter school will receive a penny of federal money. None.”
“And any charter school that, in fact, is worthy of being able to be in education, would have to be accountable to the same exact school boards, the same exact mechanisms that the public school is accountable to across the board,” Biden continued. “
The former vice president went on to say, “There has to be transparency. Now a lot of these charter schools are significantly underperforming, significantly. I can see where you can have a school, for example, a specialty school in the arts or for music. But if you’re going to have a charter school, it cannot come at the expense of the public school. It cannot come at the expense of the public school. We have to fully fund them.”
Biden also underscored, “And any charter school that qualifies as essentially a chartered public school has to be accountable to the same standards, the same requirements, the same transparency as the public schools in that district are accountable to, meaning the Board of Education or whatever the mechanism and the controls of that school board.”