Better than Charlie Rose w/Rahm Emanuel: Berkowitz w/CPS Board Member Andrea Zopp- Hypocrisy and her choice to exit CPS? Web and Cable

Andrea Zopp: we have the loss of the public education system. That’s what we... lose.

Jeff Berkowitz: Aren’t the kids in the public school system more important than the public school system?

Tonight's City of Chicago edition of Public Affairs with Jeff Berkowitz features Andrea Zopp, Member of the Chicago Public School Board of Education and President of the Chicago Urban League. The program airs in its usual slot, 8:30 pm on Cable Ch. 21 [CANTV], throughout the City.

You can also watch the program with Zopp here. 

For a partial transcript of the show with Andrea Zopp, more about Andrea Zopp and more about the topics discussed in the show, please go here.

It is interesting that CPS Board Member Zopp chooses to opt out of the CPS and send one of her own kids to a private school. That is certainly what we expect all parents to do-- try to exercise choice and send their kids to the school that is best for their child.

However, like Mayor Rahm Emanuel, President Obama, Speaker Mike  Madigan, Rev. Jesse Jackson, former Cong. Jesse Jackson, Jr. , former Gov. Rod Blagojevich and former IL Senate President Tommy Hynes (and many other Democratic Party politicians and public figures), Andrea Zopp opposes school vouchers-school choice for low income parents in public schools, saying such choice will hurt the public school system and hurt students of color.

Yet, like all of those other Democratic Party politicians and public figures, Zopp exercises school choice to take her son out of the public school system and sends him to a private school.  

It was hypocritical of Rev. Jackson to oppose school vouchers for low income people and yet send Jesse Jr. to the most elite, private Washington, DC school-- St. Albans.

It was and is hypocritical of Barack and Michelle Obama to oppose letting low income parents in Chicago and in Washington, DC exercise choice to exit the failing public schools by taking their pro rata share of taxpayer money and use it to send their kids to the private school of their choice and yet the Obamas  exit the public schools and send their own two kids to some of the most elite private schools in Chicago and Washington, DC.

And, it is hypocritical of Andrea Zopp, as a CPS Board Member, to oppose school vouchers-school choice for low income CPS parents, but exercise school choice to remove her son from CPS and send him to a private school.  

I mean fair is fair. How can Zopp contend that school vouchers-school choice won't work, and worse, will harm students of color but take the position that it certainly works for Zopp's affluent friends and her to opt out of the public schools and moreover, that their decision to leave the public schools won't hurt students of color.

I should note that we did not have time to discuss the issue of hypocrisy with Andrea Zopp, as we sought to cover some topics related to the Chicago Urban League.  However, Ms. Zopp has a standing invitation to come back on Public Affairs to complete our discussion of that and other topics that time did not permit us to cover completely in our first outing with CPS Board Member and Chicago Urban League President Andrea Zopp.

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Jeff Berkowitz: My question to you is what do you lose by trying school vouchers-school choice if you have had 18 years of school reform [in the Chicago Public Schools (“CPS”) that has basically failed] ? If one out of every five black kids in the 4th grade at CPS reads at grade level, what are you afraid of? [That school vouchers-school choice] will drive that statistic down to one out of every six? [In other words,] you have nothing to lose by trying school vouchers-school choice.

Andrea Zopp: we have the loss of the public education system. That’s what we ... lose.

Jeff Berkowitz: Aren’t the kids in the public school system more important than the public school system?

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Jeff Berkowitz: …Why not try school vouchers-school choice.

Andrea Zopp: Because I don’t believe [school vouchers-school choice] will work and I believe [they] will ultimately harm students of color.   

Program recorded on July 20, 2013. 

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