Tom Ultican: The City Fund Uses Oligarch Money to Privatize Public Schools

Tom Ultican, retired instructor of advanced arithmetic and physics, is an specialist on the “Destroy Public Education” motion. In this publish, he explores the oligarch dollars powering The City Fund and the metropolitan areas it has specific for privatization of their public educational institutions.

He writes:

Born in 2018, The City Fund (TCF) is a focus of oligarch prosperity crushing democracy and privatizing the commons. John Arnold (infamous ENRON electrical power trader) and Reed Hastings (Netflix CEO and previous California Constitution Universities Affiliation board member) claimed to be investing $100 million each to create TCF. Their July 2018 announcement was delivered on Neerav Kingsland’s blog “Relinquishment” which recently started off demanding acceptance to accessibility.

The TCF purpose is to put into practice the portfolio college management design into 40 metropolitan areas by 2028. At current TCF claims it is “serving” 14 towns: Oakland, Ca Stockton, Ca Denver, Co Camden, NJ Washington, DC: Memphis, Tenn Nashville, Tenn New Orleans, La Indianapolis, Ind. Atlanta, Ga Fort Worth, Tx San Antonio, Tx Baton Rouge, La and Newark, NJ.

The operating composition of the fund is modeled after a law agency. 6 of the fourteen founding customers are lawyers. They constitute the main of the group remaining compensated to execute the oligarch financed attack on public instruction….

TCF has put in closely to build a area ground recreation in the communities of specific towns. On their net internet site, they supply a record of significant grants made by 12/31/2019 defining big grants as being extra than $200,000. Lots of of these grants are to other privatization targeted companies like TFA and Chiefs for Alter, but most of them are for creating area organizations like the $5,500,000 to Chance Believe in in Saint Louis an additional TFA connected business enterprise. The TFA produced asset, founder and CEO Eric Scroggins, labored in numerous management positions at TFA for 14 several years. Table-1 below lists this nationwide investing.

In several methods, The Thoughts Have faith in in Indianapolis, Indiana was the design for this form of improvement. A 2016 write-upfrom the Progressive Policy Institute (PPI) which is quite school privatization pleasant addresses its development from the 2006 founding by Democratic Mayor Bart Peterson and his right hand person David Harris right until 2016. PPI mentioned,

“The Thoughts Trust persuaded Instruct For The us (TFA), The New Trainer Project (now TNTP), and Stand for Kids to appear to Indianapolis, in part by raising revenue for them. Due to the fact then TFA has brought in much more than 500 lecturers and 39 college leaders (the latter through its Indianapolis Principal Fellowship) TNTP’s Indianapolis Educating Fellows System has properly trained 498 lecturers and Stand for Youngsters has worked to engage the community, to teach parents about school reform, and to spearhead fundraising for faculty board candidates.”

The Head Belief grew to become a prosperous case in point of employing all of the important tactics for privatizing community educational institutions. As a result, the Indianapolis Public University process is the next most privatized program in The united states with in excess of 60% of its college students attending colleges no for a longer period managed by the elected college board.

Stand for Kids which the PPI referenced is almost totally about funneling darkish revenue into area university board races. These nationwide initiatives are now remaining bolstered by the political action firm staffers at TCF established, Community Faculty Allies. Community Faculty Allies was established as a 501 C4 business this means it can add to politicians however contributions to it are not tax exempt.

Billionaire funded companies like Community University Allies can overwhelm regional elections. For example, in 2019 they offered $80,000 to the impartial expenditure committeeCampaign for Fantastic Camden Educational institutions. In the initially school board election considering the fact that the 2013 point out takeover of Camden’s community colleges, the a few oligarch supported candidates won with vote totals of 1208, 1283 and 1455 votes.

Gary Borden was the Executive Directorof the California Constitution University Affiliation 501 C4 corporation before he grew to become a Husband or wife at TCF. Now he is the director of Public Faculty Allies.

A TCF Companion sits on the board of a lot of of the area political businesses they fund. Kevin Huffman is on the board of The Memphis Instruction Fundand Atlanta’s RedefinED. Husband or wife Ken Bubp is on the board of New Faculties for Baton Rouge. Gary Borden is on the board of The Thoughts Belief. He replaced David Harris who appears to have resigned from TCF. Harris was also on the board of San Antonio’s Town Training Companions. Unfortunately, their new website web page no lengthier lists the board customers.

Ultican goes on to describe the philosophy of The Metropolis Fund and its spin-offs: “…democracy is undesirable and privatization is excellent.”

Fashionable “school choice” ideology promoted by lots of white billionaires is small different from the approaches of southern segregationist in the 1950s and 60s. It even now boosts segregation and creates an “inherently unequal”and racist training system…

Ultican concludes:

The large portions of cash concentrated in these types of few fingers are destroying democracy. How is a citizen of an impoverished community who is opposed to getting her community educational institutions privatized likely to politically contend with oligarchs from San Francisco or Seattle or Bentonville? Organizations like Public Faculty Allies often appear in and monetarily swamp any political opposition. That is not democracy.

I am confident that John Arnold who is opposed to individuals obtaining pensions sincerely believes constitution universities are superior than community schools. Likewise his lover, Reed Hastings, certainly thinks that elected school boards are bad. And Alice Walton truly does feel that vouchers are a good idea. Even so, I think they are wrong and that the thought of offloading some of their tax stress is much additional essential to their beliefs than they will acknowledge.

Witnessing the oligarch fueled attacks on the commons I am persuaded that billionaires need to have to be taxed out of existence if we are to have a wholesome democracy of the people, by the individuals and for the people today.

It could appear quick to criticize billionaires due to the fact of the To start with Amendment. It is not. A number of several years back, I wrote a write-up about John Arnold, mentioning the point that he had been a significant-flying electricity trader at Enron. A number of days afterwards, I got detect from an Arnold spokesperson that he would sue me if I did not delete the publish. Not seeking to combat a billionaire in court, I backed down. Fantastic luck to Tom Ultican.