In what is going to be viewed as another desperate attempt to appeal to liberal voters, Hillary Clinton has changed her tune on charter schools. Long a school choice advocate, in the 2016 election cycle the former secretary of state suddenly spurns them.
Charter schools “don’t take the hardest-to-teach kids, or, if they do, they don’t keep them,” she claimed at a town hall in South Carolina.
She had a much different perspective as first lady. In her 1996 book “It Takes a Village,” Hillary may as well have been writing a pro-school choice ad.
“I favor promoting choice among public schools, much as the President’s Charter Schools Initiative encourages,” she wrote. “Federal funding is needed to break through bureaucratic attitudes that block change and frustrate students and parents, driving some to leave public schools.”
Further more, when President Bill Clinton created a grant program for charters, Hillary lauded her husband’s efforts.
“The president believes, as I do, that charter schools are a way of bringing teachers and parents and communities together — instead of other efforts — like vouchers — which separate people out — siphon off much needed resources; and weakening the school systems that desperately need to be strengthened,” Hillary Clinton said at a 1998 White House meeting.
Conservatives champion charter schools because they often don’t employ teachers who belong to unions and have more freedom than most public schools. Too many public schools are burdened with bureaucracy, where teachers and parents have little autonomy to choose what kind of education is best for their children.
Now that Clinton has embraced charter school bashing and wants the government to have more control over education, Politico has dubbed her a “teachers union president.”