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It’s disappointing that the Seattle School Board is dragging its feet about charter schools [“Seattle School Board not keen to enter charter-school business,” Local News, April 9].

As the Spokane School District has already discovered, charter schools offer a viable solution to reduce the achievement gap through innovative school design and new methods of teaching and learning. Many parents and citizens understand that federally driven teacher-evaluation systems and mountains of student data do not effectively leverage improvement in achievement.

But the educational establishment remains heavily invested in the prescriptions of the No Child Left Behind law and continues to behave as though the labyrinth of state and federal requirements some day will actually work. This kind of magical thinking hurts the efforts of teachers, parents and administrators who are highly motivated to develop new types of schooling.

Two decades of research and empirical evidence from many other states demonstrate that public charter schools can well serve all students, especially those who suffer from the glaring inequities of our current system.

It would be wonderful if more school boards acted less threatened and began to invest in the future rather than place bets on a game that has already been lost. Let’s look to Spokane for our inspiration — not to Olympia or Washington, D.C.

Steve Rowley, Bainbridge Island