Count legendary school choice activist Howard Fuller among those who don’t have a problem with for-profit entities in education reform.
At the Black Alliance for Educational Options symposium in Orlando on Thursday, Fuller, who is BAEO’s chair, told several hundred participants at a first-timers orientation that “you also need to not have, at least in my opinion, a knee-jerk reaction to for-profits.”
“At the end of the day, judge something by what it does,” he said. “Don’t start by judging the label.”
The participation of for-profit companies is often raised by critics in parental choice debates on everything from virtual and charter schools to parent triggers and tutoring providers. It’s also an issue to some extent within the choice community. A few months ago, Rick Hess from the American Enterprise Institute and Ben Austin with Parent Revolution engaged in a back-and-forth on the issue after Austin suggested nonprofits are more likely to put children first.
Fuller weighed in after letting attendees know BAEO supports effective public private partnerships. Here’s the full text of his remarks, as best as I could hear them: