Supporters of the Opportunity School District sent out mailers with racial overtones that seemed to estrange rather than engage voters.

Why did governor’s Opportunity School District fail?

Gov. Nathan Deal saw six out of 10 Georgians reject his passionate plea to allow him to take over failing schools.


Voters did not accept the governor’s insistence the best hope for failing Georgia schools rested with proposed his Opportunity School District, patterned after similar state takeover districts in New Orleans and Tennessee.

The marketing plan for Amendment 1 never seemed to coalesce. Besides Deal, few big GOP names got behind the Opportunity School District, perhaps payback for the governor’s veto of the religious liberties and guns-on-campus laws. Many Georgians complained about the overtly racial mailers from the pro OSD campaign.

But at the heart of the defeat was likely the public’s support of local control of their schools. They just did not believe the governor could better run their schools from Atlanta.

To read more, go to the AJC Get Schooled blog.