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CER Applauds Charter School Families Taking a Stand at Las Vegas Democratic Presidential Debate

Parents of minority students – put at risk by anti-charter platforms – to rally TOMORROW, demand answer to #WhatAboutUs?

February 18, 2020 – WASHINGTON — The Center for Education Reform (CER) announced today its full support for tomorrow’s press conference/rally planned by the Freedom Coalition for Charter Schools and Nevada charter school families, in Las Vegas, Nevada, close to the location of the next debate among the candidates for the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination. 

IMPACT: If all but one of the candidates got their way and saw their anti-charter school platforms realized, then 46,000 Nevada students would see their academic futures put at severe risk. Parents and teachers are organizing nationwide against these threats. 

WHAT: Press Conference/Rally

WHEN: Wednesday, February 19, 2020, 4:30 PM PST (7:30 PM EST)

WHERE: Mater Bonanza Academy Public Charter School
4760 E. Bonanza Road, Las Vegas, NV 89110

WHO: The Freedom Coalition for Charter Schools, Nevada charter school families

Since last year, hundreds of impassioned parents, teachers, and students have marched and rallied before major debates and events to increase awareness of the need for education choice and opportunity and to facilitate a productive dialogue with presidential candidates. With the notable exception of newcomer Mike Bloomberg, each of the remaining Democratic candidates have criticized charter schools, threatened them—or, in the case of Bernie Sanders, downright denigrated them

You can follow the press conference on Facebook live at https://www.facebook.com/FreedomCoalitionForCharterSchools/

Background on Nevada Charter Schools

The original charter school law was enacted in 1997 with enormous barriers to growth. In 2007 the law was amended to allow for an additional state authorizer and that served to advance additional charter schools. To date, Nevada is home to 45 charter schools serving 46,700 students, of whom 56% are black and Hispanic. 

Charter schools give these children, many who live in districts with low-performing schools, the opportunity to receive a better education. Based on the results from the most recent National Assessment of Education Progress, also known as “the Nation’s Report Card,” giving parents this kind of choice for their kids is necessary and crucial.

According to the Report Card, the percentage of Nevada students who performed at or above proficiency remains below the national average, necessitating the expansion of more quality education options for students:

  • 4th grade math — White: 31% | Black: 12% | Hispanic: 42%
  • 4th grade reading — White: 31% | Black: 12% | Hispanic: 43%
  • 8th grade math — White: 32% | Black: 11% | Hispanic: 44%
  • 8th grade reading — White: 32% | Black: 10% | Hispanic: 43%

In other words, most students in Nevada are currently not proficient in core subjects, making charter school expansion more necessary than ever.

More Useful Links

National Charter School Achievement Data

Nevada Charter School Data

Freedom Coalition for Charter Schools official website

What Bernie Sanders Doesn’t Get About School Reform | Future Ed

Bloomberg education plan to promote charter school expansion | New York Post

Founded in 1993, the Center for Education Reform aims to expand educational opportunities that lead to improved economic outcomes for all Americans — particularly our youth — ensuring that conditions are ripe for innovation, freedom and flexibility throughout U.S. education.