The Charter Blog

The Charter Blog

Susan Aud Pendergrass

Susan Aud Pendergrass

Recent Posts

“A coordinated effort to decimate public schools” – did I read that right?

April 15, 2016 | by Susan Aud Pendergrass |

Oh my goodness – “A coordinated effort to decimate public schools” – did I read that right?

It’s Absurd to Suggest that Parents Choosing Charter Schools Caused the Pension Debt Crisis

March 23, 2016 | by Susan Aud Pendergrass |

Many of our cities are in a state of crisis—just ask the residents of Flint, Michigan. Some cities have filed for bankruptcy protection and others would if they were not constitutionally barred from doing so. A recent article in US News points to one of the major contributing culprits to these crises: underfunded public pensions that are on the brink of insolvency. The total unfunded liability...

Don’t Let the Headlines Fool You: Discipline in Charter Schools

March 18, 2016 | by Susan Aud Pendergrass |

This week in Denver, there is a fantastic academic conference happening with super smart people trying to figure out the most pressing issues in education. The papers at this conference are typically peer-reviewed research that can be a bit complicated for a general audience. In fact, there is an entire session devoted to school discipline, where in-depth papers titled “Finding a Systemic Remedy...

Los Angeles Charter Schools Outperform District-Run Schools in 2015 NAEP TUDA Results

March 10, 2016 | by Susan Aud Pendergrass |

Public schools in our nation’s cities face immense challenges. Nearly 70 percent attend public schools in which more than half of the enrollment qualifies for free or reduced-price lunch. This type of concentrated disadvantage can make it difficult to provide a quality education that improves outcomes for these children.

More Cities Empowering Parents with School Choice Options

February 04, 2016 | by Susan Aud Pendergrass |

For at least a century, affluent parents have informally exercised school choice by moving to a city or neighborhood that they perceive to have “good” schools. And, indeed, depending on which poll you select, between two-thirds and three-quarters of the public believe that choosing a school that can best serve your child should be a fundamental right—regardless of income—just as Medicaid...

Good Reasons to "Go Long" on Charter Schools

January 08, 2016 | by Susan Aud Pendergrass |

I saw The Big Short last weekend and it was both fantastic and disturbing. We all remember the subprime mortgage collapse. But, this movie was about the guys who saw it coming. These guys knew that the share of junk mortgages inside the derivatives was growing and the banks were just hiding them inside bundles. The good guys visited half-built neighborhoods in Florida with huge homes that had...

Charter Schools Point the Way to Higher Achievement in LA

December 22, 2015 | by Susan Aud Pendergrass |

As we have previously reported, the most recent results of the NAEP – the Nation’s Report Card – make it clear that charter schools in Los Angeles have been doing an outstanding job of educating their students. Researchers at Stanford have also found that, after controlling for student characteristics, charter school students in Los Angeles gain about 50 additional days of learning in reading...

Having More School Options Can Be a Win-Win for Cities and Parents

November 05, 2015 | by Susan Aud Pendergrass |

When charter schools first opened, some believed, these new public schools were created to kill public education in the US by letting public school students take some of their public education funding outside of the district system. For others, charters schools were going to be beacons for innovation that would create education laboratories and develop thousands of unique approaches to teaching...

NAEP Has Good News for DC Students and Families

November 03, 2015 | by Susan Aud Pendergrass |

Although much of the news was negative at Tuesday’s release of 2015 NAEP results, there were a few bright spots. The District of Columbia was one of two “states”[1] to record a gain in both 4th grade reading and 4th grade math.  It’s no secret that DC, like many of our nation’s cities, has struggled to provide a high quality education to its students. And its total enrollment fell by nearly...

Los Angeles Charter Public Schools Shine in New NAEP Results

October 29, 2015 | by Susan Aud Pendergrass |

New results from NAEP –the Nation’s Report Card – were released yesterday, and for students overall the news was less than stunning. In 3 of the 4 assessments – 4th and 8th grade mathematics and 8th grade reading – students did worse in 2015 than they did in 2013, the last time the test was given. In 4th grade reading, students did no better or worse than the last time. Some charter public...

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