Far from home, The New York Times says that charter schools are one of the reasons for lay-offs in large public school districts. Depending on which side of the aisle you are on, this could be seen as a sign of victory or a sign that charter schools are an even greater evil that previously realized.
The fact remains that in a free country avenues of choice should be sought. In any sector if a competitor arises that either does a better job or at least is perceived to be doing a better job, people will use that competitor. This means that lay-offs in the original company or type of delivery method will occur. Just as we do not use rail transportation as we used to, public schools that do not keep their students will not be used as much.
This is not a reason that charter schools should not exist. Remember that if we are concerned about jobs, charter schools also employ people. Those people would not be employed if their students went back into the public schools.
The argument against charters based on the negative impact on traditional public schools is a smoke screen. Charter school opponents obviously only care about one class of people's jobs, not everyone's job. This isn't a universal appeal to some moral standard. It's simply a cry for help and a bail out rather than an understanding that something has to change. Even if the real long term change doesn't include charter schools, that doesn't mean that it should include all of the laid off employees getting their jobs back. In fact, it may mean change radical enough that further lay-offs are necessary. I'm not sure because I'm not convinced that anyone who has the power to make the necessary changes knows what the necessary changes are.
In the mean time, let's not panic If you are a charter school supporter, you shouldn't feel guilty. Lay-offs are part of life. No one likes them in the short term. I'm not suggesting that they are fun. But if life were only about fun, then, in my thirteen year-old's opinion, school wouldn't be necessary at all. Perhaps we don't need school in the traditional sense at all, perhaps all we need are charter schools or schools like them, or schools even more radical. Now, that's an idea that really might result in lay-offs.