Charter Schools Debate Heating Up

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The debate over charter schools is one that has been brewing for months now.

"President Obama has embraced charter schools and is a proponent of charter schools," House District 83 Representative Greg Snowden says. "We're going to have a charter school bill and it is going to pass. It's going to be a good bill."

"We don't see the need for charter schools because we're doing everything we can within the system that's already in place to give our children a high education," Meridian Public School District Superintendent Dr. Alvin Taylor says.

Of course, charter schools are schools that receive some public funding, but are not required to follow certain local and state guidelines that public school are required to. Taylor says he doesn't support the concept of charter schools because of the flexibility they are given that public schools aren't. However, Snowden says charter schools will help children in areas with failing schools and says expects there to be major support for charter schools during this year's legislative session.

"We have twenty school districts in the state of Mississippi that are "F" districts," Snowden says. "Kids in those districts are crying for help and we have an obligation to try and find a way to improve their situation."

You know, friendly competition is good for any market, whether it is private sector or public service," Taylor says. "However, charter schools will be held to a different level, as the bill is as I understand it now, they will not be held to the same accountability measures that public education is."

Snowden will talk more about charter schools on Sunday's edition of On the Record with John Johnson.