Critics Zing Corbett Over Voucher Speech Venue

By Natalka Karaman, Contributing Writer

Reforming Pennsylvania’s school system is one of Governor Corbett’s priorities this fall. He will unveil his long-awaited school reform package – which is widely expected to include a plan for vouchers, merit pay for teachers, and charter school reform – today at the Lincoln Charter School in York.

HypocrisyWatchPA, a liberal watchdog group, sent an email to reporters Monday mocking the Governor’s choice of venue for his announcement.  The group points to Lincoln’s below-average average math and reading test scores, and argues that the school is far from a success story.

“When Gov. Corbett announces his education reform plan tomorrow, he’ll do it at a school that suffers from the very problems he’s trying to fix,” wrote spokesman Jordan Libowitz, a former staffer on the Sestak for Senate campaign. He pointed to an AP article which suggested that increased public school funding lead to higher test scores.

Each year, students in grades three through eight and 11 take the Pennsylvania System of School Assessment tests. The federal No Child Left Behind Act requires that schools and districts have 100 percent of students scoring proficient or better on the tests by 2014. For 2010-11, the goals to make “Adequate Yearly Progress” as required by law were and 67 percent proficient or better in math and 72 percent proficient or better in reading.

The state average scores were 77.1 percent proficient or better in math and 73.5 percent proficient or better in reading. Lincoln Charter scored 62 percent proficient or better in math and 51.6 percent proficient or better in reading – mostly in line with other schools in the district.

The venue carries special significance for Corbett: he announced his gubernatorial bid there. PA’s first public school converted to a charter school, Lincoln opened as part of an effort to improve public education in the city of York.

Corbett’s office did not offer a response to the criticism.

October 11th, 2011 | Posted in Front Page Stories, Harrisburg, Top Stories | 1 Comment

One thought on “Critics Zing Corbett Over Voucher Speech Venue”

  1. George Bonekemper says:

    The academic performance of charter schools in Pennsylvania is pathetic despite their high costs. An independent study released by Stanford University in April 2011 found that cyber charter schools in Pennsylvania do an overwhelmingly worse job than educating children than traditional public schools. 100% of cyber charter schools performed signicantly below their public counterparts in both reading and math. Brick and mortar charter schools don’t do much better. Several of them are on the PDE list for questionable PSSA scores. Why aren’t charter schools listed on the persistently failing schools list? They accept public funding and “claim” to be public schools!

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