The New Charter Packaging
The election of Donald Trump presented nominally-Democratic reformsters with a problem.
How could they put some distance between themselves and Trump and his Ed Secretary-designate Betsy DeVos. Neither one would pass for a progressive in even the darkest alley, and yet their preferred policies are the preferred policies of Trump-DeVos. Charters? Check. Smoosh the teachers unions? Check. Even Common Core, which Trump promised to eradicate, is much beloved by DeVos.
What, exactly, is the policy difference between the so-called progressive reform education agenda and the Trump-DeVos inclination to dismantle public education and sell off the pieces?
The dance of the faux progressives has been interesting to watch.
Some have just said, "Screw it. We love the folks who have the power." Jeanne Allen of the Center for Education Reform took just six months to go from being alarmed that Trump was playing her song to thinking that, well, maybe he was swell after all.
Others, like Whitney Tilson and DFER, hedged their bets by suggesting that nobody should take a job with Trump, but maybe DeVos deserved a chance to prove herself.
But the preferred distinction is slowly being crafted and fine-tuned. Shavar Jeffries and Peter Cunningham tried it out at the end of November, and it is turning up in places like this tweet from the left-leaning thinky tank (and previous holding tank for former future Clinton administration CURMUDGUCATION: The New Charter Packaging: