Find your next job fast at the Jan. 28 Virtual Career Fair. Register now.
Education

Massachusetts Governor Defends Board Chairman’s Charter-Campaign Donation

By Daarel Burnette II — September 14, 2016 1 min read

Massachusetts’s Republican Gov. Charlie Baker called the $100,000 donation by state school board Chairman Paul Sagan toward a campaign to expand the state’s charter sector a “nothing-burger” to which both the media and the state’s Democrats are overreacting.

“Are we going to get into the business of saying every private citizen in Massachusetts has no ability to do anything associated with their private position?” Baker said, according to the Associated Press.

Voters are expected to decide on Nov. 8 whether the state should allow for an annual 12 new charter schools. The schools would be open in the state’s lowest-performing school districts.

Massachusetts law doesn’t allow for more than 120 charter schools to operate in the state; there are currently 78 active charters.

Those opposed to the measure say it will dramatically expand the state’s charter sector and financially hurt the state’s traditional public school districts.

Those in support of the measure say charter schools will expand learning opportunities for the state’s growing population of poor and minority students.

The campaigns for and against the ballot measure, known as Question 2, have drawn millions of dollars in donations, including from national charter school supporters and from the state’s teachers union, which opposes the measure. Sagan’s donation, in particular, has stood out.

Tom McGee, the state’s Democratic Party Chairman, said, according to the AP, that the donation “suggests an inappropriate bias and, at the very least, shows poor judgement.”

He said the chairman of the state board has an “obligation to serve in that position in an unbiased manner, free from personal opinion.”

Sagan said in a statement earlier this week that he received approval from the state’s Ethics Commission before making the donation and that he is working toward “maintaining Massachusetts’s position as a national leader in public education.”


Don’t miss another State EdWatch post. Sign up here to get news alerts in your email inbox. And make sure to follow @StateEdWatch on Twitter for the latest news from state K-12 policy and politics.

A version of this news article first appeared in the State EdWatch blog.

Events

This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
School & District Management Webinar
Branding Matters. Learn From the Pros Why and How
Learn directly from the pros why K-12 branding and marketing matters, and how to do it effectively.
Content provided by EdWeek Top School Jobs
This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
School & District Management Webinar
How to Make Learning More Interactive From Anywhere
Join experts from Samsung and Boxlight to learn how to make learning more interactive from anywhere.
Content provided by Samsung
Teaching Live Online Discussion A Seat at the Table With Education Week: How Educators Can Respond to a Post-Truth Era
How do educators break through the noise of disinformation to teach lessons grounded in objective truth? Join to find out.

EdWeek Top School Jobs

Director of Information Technology
Montpelier, Vermont
Washington Central UUSD
Great Oaks AmeriCorps Fellow August 2021 - June 2022
New York City, New York (US)
Great Oaks Charter Schools
Director of Athletics
Farmington, Connecticut
Farmington Public Schools
Head of Lower School
San Diego, California
San Diego Jewish Academy

Read Next

Education Briefly Stated Briefly Stated: January 13, 2021
Here's a look at some recent Education Week articles you may have missed.
8 min read
Education Obituary In Memory of Michele Molnar, EdWeek Market Brief Writer and Editor
EdWeek Market Brief Associate Editor Michele Molnar, who was instrumental in launching the publication, succumbed to cancer.
5 min read
Education Briefly Stated Briefly Stated: December 9, 2020
Here's a look at some recent Education Week articles you may have missed.
8 min read
Education Briefly Stated Briefly Stated: Stories You May Have Missed
A collection of articles from the previous week that you may have missed.
8 min read