Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Charter pros, foes sharpen knives

An interesting article about the political battles over charters in NYS:

It's those financial services leaders who are funding the charter movement's political push. In the past year, prominent charter backers from the financial sector have poured money into the campaign coffers of supportive legislators, with state Sens. Eric Adams, José Peralta, Craig Johnson and Daniel Squadron the primary beneficiaries.

Many of the donors sit on the boards of local charter schools or foundations that support charters. They include Joel Greenblatt and John Petry of hedge fund Gotham Capital, who are board members at former City Councilwoman Eva Moskowitz's Success Charter Network; and Anthony Davis, of Anchorage Capital Management, who is on the Leadership Council of the Robin Hood Foundation, which supports charters.

Financial execs in the game

In the past year, according to campaign finance records, Mr. Adams has taken in at least $11,500 from charter supporters, $24,000 went to Mr. Peralta (who is also being courted by opponents), Mr. Johnson has been given at least $30,000, and Mr. Squadron has gotten at least $41,500. Many of the same donors have given charter advocacy group Democrats for Education Reform a total of nearly $100,000.

And this week, a group of charter supporters in the financial services world is expected to begin putting together a pot of money to take down anti-charter incumbents. In addition to targeting state Sen. Bill Perkins, the legislator who is most outspoken against charters, they'll likely set their sights on state Sen. Shirley Huntley. Proponents hope to hire former Bloomberg campaign manager Bradley Tusk to coordinate.


March 21, 2010 5:59 AM

Charter pros, foes sharpen knives

Moves to elect, oust legislators burgeon as the schools do


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