Jeff Bezos' Other Endeavor: Charter Schools, Neoliberal Education Reforms
Other education philanthropy supported by the Bezos Foundation include KIPP, Teach for America, and many individual charter schools, including privately funded math and science programs across the country.
But will Bezos' interest in changing education policy affect his control of the Post? Only time will tell.
For now, the change in ownership will probably only benefit the Post's education coverage, given the newspaper's long relationship with Kaplan, which helped prop up the paper's finances for years while the Post either largely ignored the issue of for-profit colleges or sent its executives to Capitol Hill to lobby against better oversight of the industry.
Part of the ugly history of the Post is its reliance on a predatory for-profit college called Kaplan University. Though Washington Post blogger Lydia DePillis seemed to whitewash this relationship yesterday by referring to Kaplan as only a "lucrative test prep business," in reality, Kaplan University was one of worst for-profit colleges in the country.
David Halperin at Republic Report has a run-down today of Kaplan University's record, from intimidating prospective students to deceiving them to take on tens of thousands in debt with little hope of obtaining their promised career. As Halperin also notes, the Post's old owners helped pressure lawmakers on Capitol Hill to continue providing billions in taxpayer money to the for-profit college industry. Notably, the sale of the Post to Bezos did not include Kaplan.
With Bezos in charge, hopefully he can firewall his own education agenda from the Post in ways the previous owners could not.
John Nichols writes about Bezos is not the big media story this week.
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