FAIRFIELD — Two teachers, a school employees union representative and a parent questioned a home school and independent study charter academy’s petition to be part of the Travis School District during a public hearing Tuesday.
Jerry Fillingim, labor relations representative for the California School Employees Association, said the belief that “business can do it better than government” is wrong.
“It’s just not true,” he told trustees.
Charter schools like the Western Valley Charter Academy take the cream of students while public schools face educational and financial difficulties in teaching all children, Fillingim said.
Travis Elementary School teacher Yvonne Bigham said she’s concerned about siphoning of funds that would come with Travis School District acceptance of the charter. The school district has lost music programs and reduced P.E. because of budget cuts, she said.
“The idea of taking away more from our children is unconscionable,” Bigham said.
Jerry Eaton, a teacher a Vanden High School, said the charter petition comes as “we’re trying to get back on our feet” after years of budget cuts.
Parent Dawn Kelly called charter schools a privatization of public schools and said educating children is a civic duty.
Paul Keefer of Western Valley Charter said the schools have a nine-year history and a stable staff.
“Our staff never seems to leave,” he said. “It just grows.”
Travis School District trustees are expected to vote next month on the charter school petition.
In other business, new school board members Riitta De Anda and John Dickerson were sworn into office Tuesday.
Reach Ryan McCarthy at 427-6935 or firstname.lastname@example.org.