Los Angeles is becoming a city of choice, writes RiShawn Biddle on National Review Online. LA is handing control of 12 schools to private managers; another 186 schools are slated for private management over the next three years. The district authorized 30 new charter schools last year and will approve 50 more by the 2011–2012 school year.
An even more important win for choice advocates came earlier this month, when LAUSD enacted rules allowing parents to remove principals and teaching staffs in the district’s worst-performing schools. The district can lose control of a school altogether if 51 percent of parents petition for charter conversion. . . . A state law enacted last month as part of a series of reform measures will allow the district’s students to ditch LAUSD’s worst schools for better-performing ones in surrounding districts.
Los Angeles Unified has lots of kids from low-income immigrant families. Will poorly educated, non-English-speaking parents be able to use choice to improve neighborhood schools or find better options? We’ll see.