To the editor:

Charter schools would be fine if the parents who want them paid for their children to attend. By some standards the use of the word “choice” is just another manipulation of the uninformed public mind.

Charter schools pull money from the public schools. Parents claim they pay taxes and therefore can use local tax money to send their children to a school of their choice.

If that were the case, parents who send their kids to Catholic or Greek or Hebrew schools could use tax dollars for their kids’ education. That is not the case.

Moreover, charter schools are for-profit and often have the backing of millionaire investors. Naturally, the teachers are paid abysmally and overworked in charter schools, so investors can reap rewards.

Frankly, a first-rate education is not on the mind of corporate sponsors nor are highly qualified teachers.

Charter schools do not always have the same demands put upon them as do public schools. Children with disabilities are not served properly. Children with behavioral or disciplinary problems can be turned away. Try turning away a troubled student in a public school, and a lawsuit is upon you. Try not properly providing for a child with a physical disability and bang — lawsuit.

Haverhill needs new schools. Money can ill afford to be pulled away.

I stand with the dedicated leaders of Haverhill and its teachers in steadfastly opposing failed charter schools. The words “choice in education” are just another tricky and manipulative phrasing to lure the uninformed public mind about charter schools.

The goal of the original “chartists” was to see the public schools fail. Pull enough money away, fund schools at the lowest level possible, and voila, failure. No surprise there.

Make things so difficult that they cannot succeed, and then blame the victim. Hmmm, reminds me of a Republican.

If parents want to set up a charter and open a charter school, perhaps they can have a bake sale to fund their children's education. But let's not say it's “choice,” take my hard-earned tax dollars, and enrich your corporate overlords and investors.

Michael Veves

Haverhill