The Massachusetts State Senate waded into the explosive debate over charter schools last week with a bill of their own to lift the charter school cap and increase state aid.

The immediate reaction to the proposal, however, was tepid. With neither charter school advocates nor opponents fully satisfied, it seems increasingly likely that the issue will be determined by a ballot measure coming up for a vote in November.

But should the state's policy on charter schools be decided at the ballot box?

"It makes me nervous, taking this kind of complex issue to the ballot," said Paul Reville, former Massachusetts Secretary of Education and professor at the Harvard Graduate School of Education.

"I don't think it's a good way to make public policy on an issue like this," he continued.

Reville pointed to the vicious cycle that could be triggered by legislating on this issue from the ballot box, where opposing factions could push through ballot questions every election cycle. It's a system that doesn't allow for much stability.

"Whatever side loses this fall is likely to come back the next fall and try to get it done via ballot. I'm concerned about that too," Reville said.

Paul Reville is the Francis Keppel Professor of Practice of Educational Policy and Administration Faculty at the Harvard Graduate School of Education and the former Massachusetts Secretary of Education. To hear more from Reville, tune in above.