CharterFolk Short – A Modest Proposal for Overcoming the Challenge of the Public Not Knowing What Charter Schools Are

Good Morning, CharterFolk.

Conflict alert.

I serve on the Board of Fenton Charter Public Schools.

So be forewarned as I celebrate Fenton celebrating its 30th.

Fenton Founders Joe Lucente and Irene Sumida

We’ve been recognizing the 30th anniversary of laws passing in various states …

… but not yet many schools achieving three-decades.

It’s happening now in California

and Colorado

… and will soon be spreading.

Fenton is an amazing, difficult to characterize, place.

A former district school that became a charter.

That acquired another district school.

And opened three startups.

What do we call it?

A conversion?


A “gap-buster” as CREDO did this year?

(30 years of better options. Talk about cause for celebration!)

One of the most important things we call the school is embedded in its name.

Fenton …

…  is a Charter School.

It’s stimulated 30 years of people thinking: “I don’t know what a charter school is, but I know that Fenton’s one, and Fenton’s a fantastic school.”

Recently, I’ve asserted that we need a change in mindset …

… reflecting how much bigger we’ve become. 

So it is with efforts to educate the public.

We want millions more thinking:

“I don’t know what a charter school is, but X is one, and X is a fantastic school.”

It’s a stone in the path to true understanding.

With thousands of schools across the country, we now have the potential to stimulate such thinking at such scale.

So my modest proposal?


Do like Fenton does.

Get the word charter in your name!