The Charter Blog

The Charter Blog

David Kearns

March 01, 2011 | by Nelson Smith |

We lost a giant last weekend. David Kearns blazed a trail of innovation as CEO of Xerox and then answered a plea from former President George H.W. Bush to serve as U.S. Deputy Secretary of Education. There, among many other accomplishments, he created New American Schools, the non-profit that fostered “whole-school” models such as Expeditionary Learning and Modern Red Schoolhouse – and in doing...

Dr. Tell? Don't Ask!

February 27, 2011 | by Nelson Smith |

One of the advantages of reading the news online is that you get reader comments too. That helps when a curious piece appears – as in the case of one Shawgi Tell, Ph.D., who reminded Rochester readers of some “overlooked facts” about charter schools in a Saturday op-ed. Facts such as “Many principals at charter schools lack the same credentials as their counterparts in traditional public schools”...

California's Portrait of the Movement - A Closer Look At Charter School Academic Performance

February 24, 2011 | by Jed Wallace |

Education reform has taken center stage in many debates around the nation over the past couple of years, as parents, students and communities demand better educational outcomes for all students from public schools.

Charter Schools as a Catalyst for Building Civic Capacity

February 15, 2011 | by Anna Nicotera |

Civic capacity—the notion of multiple sectors of the community coming together in concerted action to address big issues—has been examined by education reformers and researchers who argue it is critical to making systemic and long lasting improvements in the public education system. It has been suggested that public charter schools do a great job of engaging parents, educators, community groups,...

Thoughtless Pause

February 09, 2011 | by Nelson Smith |

Elegant phraseology doesn’t conceal the fact that the “thoughtful pause” proposed by Rhode Island Governor Lincoln Chaffee is a moratorium on charter growth. Some actual thinking has been provided by RI-CAN, the state’s new ed-reform group, who looked at data and found that charters are pushing achievement upward. Think again, Governor.

Harriett Ball, RIP

February 02, 2011 | by Nelson Smith |

A great teacher died yesterday. Back in the '90s, Harriett Ball took two rookie Houston teachers under her wing and showed them how to make a classroom a joyous place to learn … and then travelled with Dave Levin and Mike Feinberg through the amazing journey of KIPP, while continuing to teach and consult. We were proud to induct this great lady into the Charter School Hall of Fame along with her...

Delivering on the Promise in Missouri

January 31, 2011 | by Nelson Smith |

The Land of Truman has a unique charter environment. State law restricts chartering to St. Louis and Kansas City, but charter schools account for major market share in both places. Where 90 percent of charter authorizers around the country are local school districts, it’s universities that oversee nearly all the charters in the Show-Me state. There are some stars but, alas, way too many charters...

Obama's Challenge

January 25, 2011 | by Nelson Smith |

Last night’s briskly-delivered State of the Union address capped a dizzying few months for President Obama. He was looking out at 84 new GOP House of Representatives members -- 63 of whom were occupying seats previously held by Democrats. However, he was enjoying a rebound in personal popularity, coming off a surprisingly productive lame-duck session, and hoping to sustain and leverage the shift...

It's National School Choice Week!

January 23, 2011 | by Peter C. Groff |

Today, folks across the country are kicking off the first-ever National School Choice Week. The National Alliance for Public Charter Schools is proud to join more than 150 other organizations in acknowledging the need for greater educational options for America’s children.

Holding Charter Schools to a Higher Standard Is a Good Thing!

January 11, 2011 | by Nora Kern |

New York City is drawing attention for its recent decision to close three underperforming schools that make up the Believe High School Network, as well as the ‘C’ graded Peninsula Preparatory Charter School. James Merriman, C.E.O. of the New York City Charter School Center, penned an eloquent explanation of why these closure decisions by the city’s Education Department are so critical to living...

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