There appears to be an increasing number of articles saying that the NAACP has taken a softer tone or even rolled back the 2016 call for a charter moratorium. In this blog post I’ll set the record straight based on my personal perspectives.
On the first point, my read is that the leaders and members of the organization are still absolutely concerned about transparency and accountability in the charter sector. There’s mucho more I’d like to say about this, but I don’t want charter proponents who aren’t interested in reform to be able to prepare for what is coming.
On the second point, in my post yesterday (Roundup of NAACP’s Harder Stance on Charter Schools) there were a few media outlets (and now more blogs) that are misreporting the gist of the NAACP’s Task Force on High Quality Education. I even had a phone call with blogger Steven Singer today assuring him that the moratorium has not been rolled back.
I suspect the spread of this rumor is due to a misunderstanding about how the NAACP does its work. Let me quickly discuss the process of a civil rights resolution in the organization. A resolution first comes from a local unit— i.e. the San Jose California chapter (true story). It then often goes to a state resolution convention (this part can vary state to state). After state approval, then it goes to a national resolutions committee. Moving on from the national committee is not a forgone conclusion. For example, my resolution this year about community schools did not make it out of the national resolutions committee. If it leaps that hurdle, it finally goes to the floor of the national convention for a vote by more than 2,000 delegates from across the United States. After a resolution hurdles each of these steps, it goes up for a vote at the NAACP national board’s fall meeting. If the national board votes for ratification, the resolution becomes the national policy of the organization.
Clearly, the process for a civil rights resolution is extended and democratic.
So what does the NAACP’s Task Force on Quality Education think about all of this? You can listen to the the NAACP national board chair discuss the moratorium and the creation of the NAACP Task Force on High Quality Education process on Facebook LIVE here:
Would you like to hear what the members of the Task Force learned during their year long listening tour across the United States? I suspect their perspectives on charters might surprise you. I continued filming the discussion at the convention in the YouTube video below.
In sum, there was NO CHARTER MORATORIUM REPEAL RESOLUTION passed at the 2017 NAACP national convention in Baltimore. So, the charter moratorium call is still the national policy of the organization. Anyone who says otherwise either has a political agenda or doesn’t understand how the NAACP functions.
I hope this perspective sets the record straight. Thanks for reading Cloaking Inequity.
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