by Max Brantley
A new wrinkle in the effort by the Walton billionaires to take over public education.
Unhappy with sufficient approval of charter school applications in Illinois, charter school advocates got a separate agency created as an end around the opposition to charter school creation.
Initial problem: Lack of state money to fund the new agency.
Solution: Walton Foundation has provided operating money, funneled through an intermediary organization heavily financed by the Waltons, before a regular revenue stream kicks in. Plenty more where that came from.
Naturally, all promise there is no conflict of interest in an agency financed by the Waltons being put in charge of approval of charter schools, which the Walton money vigorously endorses. Just like we can be sure the pro-charter, anti-union department at the University of Walton in Fayetteville, which was created and continues to be endowed with Walton money, doesn't have a pro-charter, anti-union bias because of that money. Just coincidental.
Next: The Kochs will pay to operate the county planning office overseeing land use in the Lake Maumelle watershed.