Agree. My experience with charters was in comparison to district schools.

1. If districts were 2 hands tied behind your back, the original charter experience was just 1 hand tied.

2. But now charters seem like 1.5 hands tied behind your back.

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Extraordinary piece, Adam. Just pitch-perfect!

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Wow, very well said! We had one Superintendent in Buckeye, AZ overpaid by $1.7MM on her compensation over the past few years. How does that happen? One thing for sure... that's a lot of chicken coops! Sadly at the $50K average teacher salary in Arizona, that money would have paid for 34 teacher's for a year.

The innovation that parents and educators are showing in Arizona's Homeschool and ESA programs is amazing! Let them innovate! I trust parents doing what they think is best for their kids. The Arizona Auditor General reported that "Despite getting unhelpful or wrong answers from ADE staff almost 25% of the time, ESA families’ rate of misspending at unapproved merchants has fallen to 0.001%" - read it here: https://www.goldwaterinstitute.org/esa-families-vindicated-in-new-auditor-general-report/

All in, Arizona public schools spend around $8,000 per child annually but after budget over rides and facilities costs its more like $14,000 per student (again quoting Matt Beienburg at the Goldwater Institute). Universal ESA students get around $7,000 and traditional Homeschool parents won't take any money from the state even though they pay school taxes. Which system is more efficient? Our state colleges are loving having home educated kids on their campuses. In fact, they are actively recruiting them because these home educated kids are excelling in colleges. The truth can never be hidden for long. Options will improve education much faster than the schools can do it themselves. It's called "disruption". Few organizations have the courage to disrupt themselves. Ask Blockbuster, Blackberry, or Encyclopedia Brittanica how that worked out for them. Apple did it when they basically threw away the highly successful IPOD at the peak of its popularity to roll out the IPhone. When education can attract leaders as talented as Steve Jobs, maybe then they will get it right. Until then, I will bet on parents and entrepreneur teachers to make education better across the board by providing infinite options, raising salaries for teachers in high demand and making schools compete to educate our kids.

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