Response to Cyber School News Release

Following our call for rejection of unequal limits on cyber schools (which passed the House Education Committee today), I had an interesting email exchange with a public school employee.

One major points were about why students were choosing cyber schools. Me:

While I can’t speak specifically to the students who left [your district], our report Edifice Complex does address why many families choose cyber schools. It often has to with the curriculum, the individualized education plans that cyber schools provide, the greater personal connection the comfort and safety of cyber school and the like.

The accountability is that parents chose to leave your schools, for whatever reason, and send their children to cyber schools. Public schools should try to find out why students are leaving, what they need, and then try to provide for those needs. That is, they should compete for students by improving their services and providing a better education.

Instead, the public school establishment is calling for cutting off funding for students in cyber schools.

It also seems, despite everything we have written on cyber schools, that there is a lot of misinformation out there – particularly that cyber students to do not take the PSSA tests.
Cyber school are required to administer the PSSA to all students. Their results are public on More myths are addressed in our FAQ on Cyber Schools.

Also, John Micek is reporting that many in the public and press were turned away from the hearing today, which may be why I haven’t heard how the vote went down.