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In an article funded by the Walton Family Foundation, Education Week sums up the sad history of the “parent trigger” law. Clearly, the writer struggles to show the accomplishments of the law, but it is hard to hide its failings.
Two people–Gloria Romero (former state senator in California, former director of Wall Street-backed Democrats for Education Reform in California) says she wrote the law. Ben Austin, former leader of Parent Revolution, says he wrote the law.
The Gates Foundation, the Walton Family Foundation, and other foundations poured millions into Parent Revolution, hoping that parents would vote to turn their public schools over to charter operators.
At the end of the day, five years later, here is the scorecard: six states passed similar parent trigger laws. “So far, nationally, only one school, Desert Trails Elementary School in Adelanto, Calif., has been transformed into a charter while another six schools in the state have used the parent-trigger law in some way to secure changes on their campuses.”
Only one school turned charter, and that happened only after a bitter fight among parents. Parents who did not sign the parent trigger petition were not allowed to vote in choosing a charter. Ultimately only 53 out of 600 parents selected the charter operator to take control of their public school.