Response to Los Angeles Times editorial, "Charter schools' volunteer demands may discourage needy students"

January 8, 2015

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CCSA submitted the following Letter to the Editor in response to the Los Angeles Times editorial, Charter schools' volunteer demands may discourage needy students.

When a parent is involved in a child's education, the child is more likely to thrive. That's why many charter public schools and traditional district schools have strongly encouraged parent involvement. But, as the membership and advocacy organization representing most of California's charter schools, we wholeheartedly agree with the Times editorial ("Charter schools' volunteer demands may discourage needy students," January 8), which points out that requiring parents to volunteer at their child's charter school might have unintended consequences.

Since last year, we have been working with Public Advocates and state education officials to clarify the law, so charter schools can encourage parent involvement while ensuring families who might have a hard time meeting their schools' expectations for voluntarism are not dissuaded from enrolling. Active parent participation has helped fuel the charter school movement, and every family in California should feel welcome at their neighborhood charter school.

Jason Mandell
Director, Advocacy Communications
California Charter School Association