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[Susan notes: Billee Bussard points to a critical point missed by nearly everyone.]

Submitted to Sacramento Bee but not published

Dear Laurel Rosenhall:

I read with interest

your story
about the film "Waiting For Superman."

In the story you note funding coming from the Broad Foundation to promote

the film and direct the reader to WaitingForSuperman.com. which, you

write, "tells visitors how to start a charter, urges them to attend school board

meetings and asks that they contact their governor to support creating a

national curriculum for public schools."

As a retired journalist, I am disheartened that so many in the profession

are missing the big story behind the reason so many billionaires and

millionaires are pushing charters: The big tax breaks for the rich who help fund

charters and the financial instruments to fund charters that have the hedge

fund industry salivating. It is not coincidence that the hedge fund

industry is one of the main supporters of KIPP schools.

The charter school movement is supported by the same get-rich-quick folks

who got the nation into its financial crisis, and now they want to skim what

they can from public school money under the pretense of education

improvement. There are any number of studies that show the majority of charters

don't measure up. So you have to ask: What is the REAL reason this idea is

being promoted so hot and heavy by the nation's wealthy. The answer: follow the money trail.

Billee Bussard

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