Education: Keeping Them Closer to Home

In California, parents start a community school and like it

Pacific Palisades was anything but pacific that night. Parents on the advisory council for the local public schools were angrily debating plans for a court-mandated busing program. When Dave Thomsen, 36, a management consultant, objected to shipping small children 20 miles away to school, someone shouted, "Thomsen, if you don't like the way Los Angeles schools are run, why don't you just leave?" Thomsen walked out, followed by half a dozen parents. "If this were 200 years ago," he said, "we'd be starting our...

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