Stand For Children Buys Its Way Out Of The Race
Back in June, I wrote how the Nashville school board race was shaping up to be the equivalent of a Michael Bay summer blockbuster. We were going to have big explosions, bad dialogue, and lots of pretty people, but not a lot of substance. Little did I realize, though, that Stand for Children’s Dan O’Donnell was determined to play the role of Harvey Weinstein. But I guess somebody had to pay for the spectacle here, and Stand for Children has certainly written the check.
State financial disclosures were due yesterday, and they revealed that just since the beginning of July, Stand for Children has invested over $700K in campaigns across the state of Tennessee. According to The Tennessean’s reporting, SFC has spent over $200k in support of the 4 charter-friendly candidates in Nashville’s school board race. That includes roughly $55K just for mailers for each candidate and another $2K for digital marketing. Adding in donations from the Chamber of Commerce and other charter supporters, it adds up to roughly $140K spent against each of the incumbents, Will Pinkston, Jill Speering, Amy Frogge, and newcomer Christiane Buggs. If those numbers don’t offend you, let me put it in perspective.
$140k is no small chunk of change. First, let’s give everybody a $50k ceiling to run each of their four campaigns, generous I think, which would leave $90k leftover per district. $90k would be enough for three extra teacher assistants per district. Say a laptop runs $500, then $90k would be enough for 3,615 computers per district. $90k would be enough for an additional two school nurses per district. $90k would pay for two additional EL-certified teachers per district to work with English language learners. I could list alternatives all day, but instead Stand for Children is taking that money and using it for a barrage of misleading mailers.
A recent article in Nashville Scene says the amount given by SFC on the four school board races is actually over 230 thousand dollars. So what has SFC gotten for their $230k? Well, they got a longstanding Nashville non-profit in hot water, as it was revealed that SFC hasn’t been just spending money to influence but also collaborating with the charter community to funnel even more resources to the candidates Stand For Children Buys Its Way Out Of The Race « Dad Gone Wild: