Public education advocate says charter schools aren't held to same standard as public schools

Public education advocate Keron Blair told Hill.TV in an interview that aired Tuesday that charter schools have not been held to the same standard as public schools. 

"I think there was a time when folks were vehemently opposed to charters, then we realized that in places like New Orleans where that is the only option — where folks have been left," Blair, the executive director of the Alliance to Reclaim Our Schools, told hosts Buck Sexton and Krystal Ball on "Rising." 

"I work in New Orleans, and I have talked to parents and students who have said it is not choice, it is not charters, we want schools that work. We want schools where we have nurses, and libraries and the curriculum is relevant and parents get to be involved in decisionmaking," he continued.

"That is the standard, and so often, charters are not held to that standard, and so what we've pushed back against is not so much charters, but against the proliferation of an industry that takes meaningful resources from public schools, and puts them in the hands of private interests, unaccountable to the public," he said. 

Education Secretary Betsy DeVosElizabeth (Betsy) Dee DeVosThe Hill's 12:30 Report — Presented by MAPRx — Biden, Sanders to share stage at first DNC debate The Hill's 12:30 Report — Presented by MAPRx — Biden, Sanders to share stage at first DNC debate The Hill's Morning Report — Uproar after Trump's defense of foreign dirt on candidates MORE has long been a proponent of school choice, which would benefit institutions like charter schools. 

The secretary has pushed to make the case for charter and private schools, arguing that charter schools and private school vouchers are the answer to education problems in the U.S. 

Opponents, like Blair, argue that the plan takes money away from public schools. 

Blair's comments come after DeVos announced the Education Freedom Scholarships and Opportunity Act along with Sen. Ted CruzRafael (Ted) Edward CruzOcasio-Cortez and Cruz's dialogue shows common ground isn't just for moderates Ted Cruz, AOC have it right on banning former members of Congress from becoming lobbyists Ted Cruz, AOC have it right on banning former members of Congress from becoming lobbyists MORE (R-Texas) and Rep. Bradley Byrne (R-Ala.). 

The plan would involve awarding federal tax credits in exchange for groups that provide scholarships for private schools and other education programs. 

— Julia Manchester