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ERIC Number: EJ973148
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2012-Feb-8
Pages: 2
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-0277-4232
"Parent Trigger" Push Stirs Debate on Impact
Cavanagh, Sean
Education Week, v31 n20 p1, 22 Feb 2012
State lawmakers and community activists are making a new push for "parent trigger" laws, measures that let parents vote to convert academically struggling schools to charters or to radically restructure them in other ways. But proponents and critics of the often-controversial, citizen-led efforts are divided on just how profound an impact those policies are likely to have on public schools across states and districts, and about who is likely to guide overhauls of those schools--parents themselves or outside organizations. Opponents of proposals such as legislation recently introduced in Florida predict that they will lead to groups of parents organizing overhauls of schools at the urging of charter school advocates and operators. Others, however--including many backers of the parent-trigger laws--say that relatively few parents will attempt to clear the legal and organizational obstacles necessary to bring about a school overhaul, and when they do, it will be because the community's frustration with an underperforming school is widespread. California approved what is believed to be the nation's first parent-trigger law in 2010. Mississippi and Texas have also approved such laws, and Connecticut has a modified version of one. At least 12 states are considering proposals this year, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures. So far, however, there have been few attempts to restructure schools using the existing laws, partly because of opposition, but also because of the time delay before the "trigger" kicks in for academically struggling schools.
Editorial Projects in Education. 6935 Arlington Road Suite 100, Bethesda, MD 20814-5233. Tel: 800-346-1834; Tel: 301-280-3100; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: California; Florida