How Hedge Funds Will Profit from School Privatization
In the News: A number of news items in recent weeks show how powerful money-brokers work inside and outside the law in their war on public education in the United States.
(1) In the State of Washington, a State Supreme Court Judge up for reelection sided with a 6-to-3 court majority in a ruling that declared a state law directing tax dollars to independently run charter schools unconstitutional. To remake the court in their image hundreds of thousands of pro-charter Bill Gates and Paul Allen “Microsoft money” was donated to support his opponents campaign. Fortunately Washington voters rejected the charter judge, this time.
(2) Federal authorities charged seven leaders of the Platinum Partners hedge fund with fraud for operating what was alleged to be a “Ponzi scheme.” They kept the fund afloat by continually using money from new investors to pay off older investors who wanted out. Mark Nordlicht, founder and the chief investment officer for Platinum, also dabbles in operating low-cost religious schools that would benefit from the Trump-Amway DeVos voucher give-away
(3) The New York Times Business pages featured Bill Ackman of Pershing Square Holdings in an article they called “Hedge Fund Math: Heads or Tails, They Win.” It seems that even when his hedge fund performs poorly, Ackman always takes a profitable slice of the pie. According to the Los Angeles Times, Ackman’s Pershing Square Foundation has poured millions of dollars into promoting charter schools in their city. Ackman, through his foundation, is also a major donor to private schools and to Teach for America.
(4) Old friends at New York’s Success Academy Charter Network are under investigation by the city’s Comptroller for lax financial oversight, poor record keeping, understating administrative costs, and for billing the Department of Education for special education services they did not provide to students. The How Hedge Funds Will Profit from School Privatization | The Huffington Post: