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Danehey's call for an examination of AZ's charter schools is long overdue, including the regressive tax credit system in AZ that allows higher income people to use public tax revenue for their own children and abandon public schools rather than help reform them. The do-gooders, free marketers and free lovers of our baby boom generation were factors, but the major cause of the decline of our once world-class public school system has been the way we fund and administer US public education - locally - leading to wide disparities in standards, discipline, teacher recruitment and retention, and graduating students unprepared for a complex world. Since many local governments and school boards could not deliver a quality education, charter schools arose to offer an alternative that at least had to compete with others for students wishing an education. Although charter schools provide alternatives for a quality education to those willing and able to choose, they vary widely in quality and worse, leave many children behind and accelerate the further decline of public education. It is past time for a change - a democracy must have educated citizens. It may be too late: try to make sense of a Tea Party rally.
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