The evidence seems to indicate that Andre Perry is being paid by the teachers unions (AFT perhaps?) because the former charter management CEO is now unapologetically bashing charter schools. His latest piece in the Hechinger Report unpersuasively argues that the Black Lives Matter Movement needs to take on charters because they are undermining black communities.
Of course, Perry uses New Orleans to illustrate his point, but rather than provide insight on the city’s experience, Perry rehashes a litany of well-worn, conspiracy-tinged grievances arising from the post-Katrina takeover of schools and subsequent reforms – reforms, it should be noted, that Perry was deeply involved in for several years.
At one point, he tries to blame the layoffs of 7,500 school system employees by the Orleans Parish School Board in November 2005 on charter schools (as well as New Schools for New Orleans, New Leaders for New Schools, Teach For America, and the Gates, Fisher, and Broad foundations). If you’re at all familiar with Perry’s previous writing, you should be well-acquainted with the issue since he has raised it ad nauseam over the past few years, although never with any depth or real understanding. Instead, the layoffs simply serve as a provocative talking point Perry uses to attack his perceived enemies.
One must hand it to Andre Perry: He has an unparalleled ability to consistently write 1200-word essays about New Orleans education that manage to say little, if anything at all. Plus, what Perry does say often has plenty of errors; see the ones I picked out in his latest piece by clicking the link below.
Black school systems are treated like black men and women in America. Urban schools are broken up, experimented upon and policed in efforts to improve them. The reformers expect students, teachers and parents to be grateful and accept test score growth in return, just as black communities were expected to be grateful when crime dropped even as incarceration rates rose.