On Nov. 6, Georgia voters need to be aware of a confusing and deceptive question which will appear on our ballot. The question reads: “Shall the Constitution of Georgia be amended to allow state or local approval of public charter schools upon the request of local communities?”
I fear that good-intending voters may be deceived into believing that “charter” is shorthand for “freedom of choice.” And to complicate things, the language of the question is so confusing that folks may interpret it as a vote for or against charter schools. The question is not about choice, and it is not about the worthiness of charter schools.
If approved, this proposed constitutional amendment will take away local control and give the state power to create charter schools anywhere it wishes, using tax money that it once gave to support our children and grandchildren in local public schools. Our local public schools cannot suffer any more cuts in state funds.
The Richmond County Retired Educators Association recently voted to join the Georgia Retired Educators, the Georgia School Superintendents Association, the Georgia Parent-Teachers Association, the Professional Association of Educators, the Georgia Association of Educational Leaders and Georgia’s state school superintendent in opposition to this proposed amendment.
I encourage every voter in this state, including charter school supporters, to join me in voting “no” on this amendment Nov. 6.
(The writer is legislative chairwoman of the Richmond County Retired Educators Association.)