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Mon May 4, 2015, 09:14 PM

Building Hope$: Big charter, big money, big prizes, big hou$e$

You can tell charter $chools are for the children, look at the beautiful facilities!


Oh wait, that's the charter operator's house.

Who owns this lovely abode, you ask?

"Joe Bruno, a man who has become increasingly influential in the charter school industry. Originally an executive in the accounting and health care sectors, Bruno started his current organization, Building Hope, in 2004. Here's how the non-profit describes its mission:

Building Hope supports high quality public charter schools in Washington D.C., Florida and other U.S. cities and states by providing technical and financial assistance for educational facilities. A non-profit organization, Building Hope supports the expansion of academically successful schools with the capacity to grow their enrollments in order to catalyze change across their local public education systems. Building Hope promotes school-centered community revitalization, and believes that excellent charter school programs and facilities will help transform economically depressed neighborhoods into places where children will thrive. [emphasis mine]

All that may be true, but it's not the complete story. Because Building Hope is also using government grants and tax-exempt foundation funds to provide capital to the for-profit charter sector, allowing charter management organizations and charter school landowners, like the Zuluetas, to maximize their profits.

Thanks to Joe Bruno, Ferny Zulueta has been able to use capital, ultimately subsidized by taxpayers, to increase the capacity at his charter schools and collect more in both management fees and rent."


Must be nice. You can tell from how hard this civil rights hero works:

"We’ve had some great parties in this house while our daughters were growing up and with our friends from the charter school world and from the Italian American groups we belong to,” says Joe Bruno, a Ferrari-driving entrepreneur who since 2004 has served as president of Building Hope, a nonprofit that provides business, technical and financial assistance to public charter schools. “There’s a story behind every painting, every collection and every piece of furniture.”

It's a story that says: tax-payer funded luxury is awesome.

"“The murals of carnival scenes in Venice on the walls of the powder room were painted for Beverly Hills clients of mine who decided they didn’t want them, and when I realized the Brunos’ home was the perfect place for them we had them peeled off and shipped to Potomac,” says Herchik.

Along the hallway are portraits of some of Joe Bruno’s heroes, including Dante, Leonardo, Verdi and Garibaldi. Nearby are a bust of Dante and maps of Italy from the 1700s.

“One of my favorite places to sit is in the library, especially in the winter when I can have a fire going,” Joe Bruno says. “I’m surrounded by paintings of Italy.”

The library walls, originally plain white, have been faux-painted to resemble wood paneling. Often, when Joe Bruno relaxes in his library, his thoughts are focused on resolving problems faced by charter schools in the city and elsewhere with their finances or finding a school facility, but sometimes he’s thinking about enjoying a brisk game of basketball or driving one of his two Ferraris."

Well, to be fair, that's pretty much how my day goes too. Except without the Ferraris, the house, or relaxing in the library.

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Reply Building Hope$: Big charter, big money, big prizes, big hou$e$ (Original post)
Starry Messenger May 2015 OP
daleanime May 2015 #1
Starry Messenger May 2015 #2

Response to Starry Messenger (Original post)

Mon May 4, 2015, 09:18 PM

1. It's nice to actually see some of the positive results....

of for-profit education.

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Response to daleanime (Reply #1)

Mon May 4, 2015, 09:22 PM

2. Right?

Every education CEO should have his own Italianate grotto. Anything less would be injustice.

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