Ben Austin Response to Diane Ravitch
STOP THE PRESSES! Run, don’t walk, to read this open letter from Ben Austin, Executive Director of Parent Revolution, in response to Ravitch’s hateful smear of him:
Recently, in a debate about whether these parents should have the power to demand a new principal for their failing public school, you labeled me "loathsome" for siding with the parents. You declared that everyone who supports these parents "deserves a special place in Hell."
...When I see kids attending schools like Weigand, I see kids who are going through a whole lot more at home than I could have ever imagined as a boy, but who don't have a safe place where somebody believes in them, supports them and loves them. Many kids drop out like my brother, but rarely share his happy ending.
So forgive me if I take it personally when parents trapped in a failing school ask for the same kind of support for their children that saved me as a child, and that I now expect from my daughters' neighborhood public school as a father.
Your opposition to the Weigand parents is especially puzzling given the logic of your prior critique of Parent Trigger as a conspiracy to trick parents into converting their school into a charter school. The Weigand parents did not want a charter school, or new teachers, or even a new union contract. They wanted a change in leadership after 4 years of failure.
Weigand has exposed you as being opposed not just to charter schools, but to pure parent power.