Free Agency

When a charter school is in danger of closing because of poor performance, it is only natural for school officials to highlight the positive and downplay problems. But the UFT Charter School, whose troubles are well-documented, came up with a novel excuse.

“Right now in this building, our level 3 and 4 students are being recruited by other charter schools, out of the fourth grade,” said school administrator Sheila Evans-Tranumn. “We don’t go in and rob another school of their top learners. But many charter schools have an aggressive on-the-ground campaign to get the better students.”

I know how she feels. Here in Sacramento our basketball team stinks. Our best players would prefer to be somewhere else, and we can’t persuade star players from other teams to come here. Why?

Because we stink.

Perhaps it’s inevitable that a union-run charter school would see other charter schools as predatory. It’s a competitive environment – not something they’re used to. No use complaining about the rules now, not after predicting you would be champions.