Odyssey Charter School Is Trying To Poach Students From Districts Before September 30th Count

Odyssey Charter School

The Greek-themed Delaware charter school, Odyssey, sent out a letter to parents in their area advising them they are still accepting students.  As most involved in Delaware education know, schools get their funding based on the September 30th student count.  Odyssey is trying to beef up those numbers to get more money.

This is a bad idea in very bad taste.  The window for school choice in Delaware closes in mid-January.  As in eight months ago.  While charters are certainly free to accept students after those dates if they have room, actively

soliciting students after the school year has already started is lousy judgment.  It is poaching, pure and simple.  It is money driven, not student driven.  But what many forget is that some charters tend to kick out high-risk students after September 30th.  And guess what?  Some keep the funding they received.

On DSEA President Mike Matthews Facebook page, he brought this up yesterday.  While he didn’t name the school, State Rep. Kim Williams said she is aware of it and did notify the Delaware Dept. of Education.  Will the charter-friendly DOE actually address the situation or just play along to go along?

As I’ve said before, I don’t have a problem with actual charter schools and the reason for their existence.  But I do take issue with situations like this, when profit and money result in grown-ups making poor decisions.  There are good charters out there but unfortunately when certain charters keep coming up in events like this it is hard to not view the charter problem as a whole.  Whether it is discrimination, poor special education, cherry-picking students, or using lobbying power to get more money at the expense of districts, the Delaware tends to side with the charters.  Even worse, they tend to turn a blind eye to recurring issues such as the ongoing financial cesspool that is Providence Creek Academy, the enrollment preferences at Charter School of Wilmington, or the discrimination factory we call Newark Charter School.  Odyssey should not be attempting to get students from districts this far into the school year.

Will Secretary of Education Dr. Susan Bunting put the hammer down on Odyssey or will she allow this poaching journey to continue?  And what is your take on this bad education practice?

6 thoughts on “Odyssey Charter School Is Trying To Poach Students From Districts Before September 30th Count

  1. As a parent, I would love to know all of the options that I have, regarding schools that my children may or may not attend. If there was an opening in a local charter, I would want to know about it. Some parents might have been disappointed with their children’s current schools, and they might like the information that there is still a choice for their kids.
    And, why do you continually persist in your completely unsubstantiated accusation that Newark Charter is somehow discriminatory, despite the fact that it has a completely blind and random lottery? Do you think that by constantly repeating it, you will somehow create a truth out of a falsehood?


    1. As for Newark Charter School, they stacked their deck a long time ago. All you have to do is look at their demographics on the DOE website to see how their “completely blind and random lottery” has shaped their demographics but only after you see all their enrollment preferences first. I don’t have an issue with charters trying to get students but not AFTER the school year has already started. If they want to beat the drum up until that point, go at it. But it is bad practice to do what Odyssey is doing now.


  2. They are not poaching anyone. They are “inviting” the students that have applied and been wait-listed to take a spot. You missed that fact in your post.


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