Mass exodus

Beantown is experiencing a talent migration. As go Pedro and Damon, so go the educational leaders? Plagued by charter school caps and a "broader environment" that is "at best tepid, and frequently hostile," founders of Roxbury Preparatory Charter School, Academy of the Pacific Rim, and Boston Collegiate-to name a few-have fled the Bay State's lukewarm embrace for the open arms of the Big Apple. Last year, fewer than 2.5 percent of Massachusetts students were enrolled in charter schools-ranking them nineteenth out of the forty states with charter laws. This despite the fact that once upon a time the Bay State was a leading light of the charter movement. The problem comes down to leadership, argues Jim Peyser, former aide to governors and chairman of the state board of education, specifically the leadership of Governor Deval Patrick and Boston Mayor Thomas Merino, who have "consistently opposed any expansion of charter schools." And thus, it seems, are consistently encouraging some of Massachusetts's finest educators to exit for points south.

"Brain Drain," by James A. Peyser, Boston Globe, September 14, 2008

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