In the search for bright spots in Tuesday’s horrible elections, we can look to Massachusetts, where voters resoundingly rejected the attempt to gut the state’s public schools. Though—or even because—Massachusetts has the best public schools in the nation, massive amounts of money flowed into the state from the likes of the Walmart Waltons, pushing a ballot measure that would have lifted an existing cap on the number of new charter schools allowed to open in the state in a year. That would have siphoned millions of dollars from public schools, even threatening bond ratings for Boston and three other cities. Voters were not having it.
Make that: Voters were really not having it. Question 2 was defeated by a 24-point margin, 62 percent to 38 percent. And the map shows just how widespread that opposition was:
Of course, charter backers and their unlimited bank accounts are not necessarily deterred by a loss—Washington state voters rejected charter schools three times before the big money finally won out. But the size of their loss in Massachusetts should give the privatizers pause. And the fight to defeat this measure should be an example for future fights elsewhere.