There’s a new player in the Tennessee education news landscape. Really, it’s an old player dressed up in a friendly new package.
Tennessee Firefly is an education news source that effectively serves as a mouthpiece for the forces of school privatization. Sky Arnold heads it up. Sky is formerly of the local FOX affiliate and before Firefly, was the communications chief over at Tennesseans for Student Success. Yes, Tennesseans for Student Success now has its own education news organ.
Here’s how they describe their mission:
That’s interesting because TNEdReport has been offering the truth about education news in the state since 2013. There’s also Chalkbeat. And, of course, Dad Gone Wild.
In short, there’s no shortage of people and outlets offering clear analysis on education news in the state. Heck, the Tennessean and Daily Memphian offer up regular doses of education news. There’s even Center Square.
Still, Tennesseans for Student Success, fresh off some big wins in the August GOP primaries, is hungry for more – and now seeks to drive the media narrative around school privatization with an outlet of their own.
What’s the real deal? It all comes down to Hillsdale College. The controversy over Hillsdale’s charter applications has caused the public – and policymakers – to take a new look at privatization by way of charter school.
Here’s Firefly saying that while the Hillsdale controversy may look bad, it’s cool to go charter:
Seems everyone is running away from Larry Arnn and Hillsdale – even though they have three schools (in Madison, Montgomery, and Rutherford) appealing to the State Charter Commission to gain access to local public funds despite objections from local school boards.
Here’s a bit more about Tennesseans for Student Success and their aggressive pursuit of privatization by any means necessary:
Anyway, watch out for the education firefly offering “news” slanted to promote a privatization agenda.
For more on education politics and policy in Tennessee, follow @TNEdReport
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