They are private citizens who get to spend taxpayer dollars to educate children. They argue that the market will determine success. Unfortunately, they get to define what success looks like -- not the public whose taxes fund the school, nor voters who are the ultimate policy makers in a democratic society.
While Success Academy students do better than average on high-stakes assessments, there is a rising crescendo of criticism because of Moskowitz's use of wealthy political connections to promote her empire, and accusations that Success Academy suspends poorly performing students to drive them out of the schools and boost its average test scores.
Wall Street loves charter schools. Andrew Cuomo wants to be re-elected governor of New York with a large majority. One of his biggest sources of money is Wall Street. Cuomo now wants to take charge of dispensing millions in public funds to charter schools for construction, and he wants to assure them that they can have public space without paying rent.
What is missing from the controversy so far is any interest on the part of the journalists in basic facts. Instead, what is happening is a PR battle. Eva Moskowitz has attacked Mayor de Blasio in multiple media appearances, and no one in the media has bothered to check any of her claims. Let's fill that gap.