The grades are in for Mississippi schools and not everyone is passing. It brings up the question of whether there are other options, and some say it supports the need for charter schools. Others still have their doubts.
"The fact that 1/3 of our districts are rated D or F is embarrassing," said Forest Thigpen, President of the Mississippi Center for Public Policy
Thigpen says those grades help the case for charters.
"We need to have charter schools so parents in those districts have options," Thigpen said.
That's always been the argument from supporters. If there's a failing district, don't box in parents to send their kids to those schools.
The report shows 36 F districts and 15 with a D. Still, some lawmakers aren't convinced charter schools are the way to raise the grade.
"Charter schools will come in and if they do help, they will help only a small number of kids. We've got a major problem here that charter schools alone cannot fix, cannot solve," said Democratic Sen. John Horhn.
Thigpen argues they aren't claiming to be a full saving grace for grades.
"Charter schools is not the be all, end all. But it does provide just a small element of competition and options that parents can choose. And we need to allow that more extensively throughout the state," said Thigpen.
Still, Horhn doesn't expect there to be as many of the schools started as once discussed.
"They are an untried, untested operation in Mississippi and it's going to be slow to take off," said Horhn.
And even Thigpen believes there will need to be a re-evaluation of the qualifications.
"It is too restrictive in dictating who cannot go to a charter school," Thigpen explained.
Currently a charter school can be placed in any D or F district. While the school boards in the A, B and C districts have the power to prevent them from coming in.
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