BAEO Statement on the NAACP Resolution to Support a Moratorium on New Charter Schools
BAEO President Jacqueline Cooper released the following statement on the NAACP Board of Directors' decision to ratify a resolution in support of a moratorium on all new charter schools. The vote took place during the organization's fall board meeting in Cincinnati, Ohio and comes after multiple attempts, including hosting a meet and greet at the location of the board meeting to discuss the impact of the resolution on the education of Black children, were repeatedly denied.
"We are absolutely stunned that the NAACP voted to put distortions, lies and outdated ideologies about charter schools above what is in the best interest of our children. It is inexplicable to me that such a storied organization, responsible for leading a powerful civil rights movement to tear down barriers for generations of Black people, would erect new ones for our children.
"Not all charter schools are perfect. Just like traditional district schools, some are working very well and some are not. High-quality schools should be supported and schools that are not educating our children should be improved or closed. But with more than 700,000 students enrolled on charter campuses, we must continue supporting them just like we must continue supporting traditional district schools to make them better for our children. Banning new charter schools will only widen the achievement gap for Black children by reducing the number of high-quality options available and increasing the number of names on existing waiting lists. Low-income and working-class Black families deserve more choice, not less.
"As tragic as this decision is by the NAACP's Board of Directors, we remain committed to working with the organization in areas where we mutually agree to increase access to high-quality educational options for low-income and working-class Black families.
"It is time to break the cycle once and for all of generation after generation of Black children underprepared to go to, through and beyond college to become economically independent adults."
The NAACP's decision comes after 160 Black education and faith leaders sent a letter to the NAACP urging the organization to reconsider a moratorium and learn more about the charter schools. Black charter school families from New Jersey, New York, Oklahoma, Texas, and Washington state also penned a letter to the NAACP, expressing their stance on charter schools as a critical component to student success. Their ChartersWork petition attracted more than 3,000 signatures from parents from across the country concerned about the ban on charter schools.