California Virtual Academy: San Mateo board’s statement about investigation
Bay Area News Group
04/18/2016 03:12:14 PM PDT Updated: about a month ago
The board of directors from the California Virtual Academy at San Mateo issued the following statement Monday in response to a Bay Area News Group investigation published Sunday and Monday into the online charter and its partner schools run by for-profit K12 Inc.
Recent articles in The Mercury News are a gross misrepresentation of our school and its operations, and the independence of our nonprofit charter school board.
We are members of the California Virtual Academy @ San Mateo public charter school board. Our school is part of one of the CAVA public charter schools, each governed independently by their nonprofit school boards made up of California residents, including parents, educators, and local community leaders who are committed to providing families with educational options for their children.
Alleging that we have any other interest except for our children and the CAVA families is both wrong and insulting. We take our role as governing board members very seriously. We are volunteers. We are not paid. Many of us have children in the CAVA schools. We have experience serving on other nonprofit boards. Our school has its own independent attorneys who guide us to ensure we are in compliance with state charter school regulations. We provide input and work together with our school administrators, just like other charter schools.
The allegations made in these articles about our schools are inaccurate. They are the same attacks made repeatedly by opponents of public charter schools, including by the California Teachers Association, an organization that has been aggressively attempting to unionize all eleven of the CAVA network of schools. The union has disparaged our schools and lobbied for legislation directly aimed at shutting our schools down and taking these options away from our parents, students, and teachers.
Our parents are extremely thankful that CAVA is an option for their children. Thousands of families choose CAVA schools. Many students are succeeding. We see hundreds of students graduating from CAVA schools each year. Unfortunately, the paper all but dismissed the successes. Further, the paper never asked why parents are leaving their local schools and choosing CAVA schools. Parents would not choose alternatives if their local school was working for their child. Sadly, the paper completely ignores the positive experiences of the vast majority of CAVA families and teachers, electing instead to quote a small handful of critical voices. It is exactly what opponents of charter schools have done for years. This is classic case of unfair and biased journalism.
Parents want choice in education. Students deserve options, because one size does not fit all. We love our school. We are proud to represent and stand with CAVA’s educators and families. We are proud of the achievements and the hard work of our students, staff, and volunteer board members.
— Don Burbulys, President, CAVA @ San Mateo
Erin Wong, Board Member, CAVA @ San Mateo
Christa Enns, Board Member, CAVA @ San Mateo
Stephen Warren, Board Member, CAVA @ San Mateo