The Charter Blog

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

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 for all public pension plans has reached a staggering $1.7 trillion dollars. And, as Don Boyd of The Nelson A. Rockefeller Institute of Government at SUNY points out, teacher pension plans make up a large share of these plans.

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Posted in News

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

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 to Excessive Discipline in Schools: Efforts in DC and New Orleans to Bring Coherence and Consistency Across Autonomous Schools,” and “The Timing of SNAP Benefit Receipt and Disciplinary Incidents,” ground the discussion.

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Posted in News

Discipline in Charter Schools: There’s More to the Story

This week, the Civil Rights Project at UCLA came out with a report on charter and traditional public schools’ discipline practices. The Civil Rights Project has a track record of being critical of charter schools, and it was no surprise that the report cast a negative light on the charter movement.

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Posted in News

National Alliance Honors National School Choice Week

Today kicks off the start of our blog series celebrating National School Choice Week (#NSCW), which shines a positive spotlight on effective educational options for every child. Charter public schools are the fastest growing segment of public school choice, and the National Alliance is proud to participate in #NSCW.

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Posted in News

The Last 10 Days in Washington State

 

On the evening of Nov. 12, 2012, many parents and education reformers had reason to celebrate – a charter school law had passed in the state of Washington after many years of discussion and debate. Washington voters became the first in the nation to approve a public charter school law by ballot initiative, giving hope to many families who sought a new school option for their children.

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Posted in News, Legal

Charter Schools in Tennessee’s Achievement School District Show Growth

The Achievement School District (ASD) is a statewide school district that was conceptualized four years ago to move schools performing at the bottom five percent (“Priority schools”) in Tennessee to the top 25 percent within five years. The ASD relies heavily on public charter school autonomies and operators as a reform tool. And the original schools that joined the ASD are showing great progress towards this audacious reform goal: 2014-15 test results show that schools in their second and third years in the ASD earned the state’s highest possible growth rating (averaging a Level 5) on the Tennessee Value-Added Assessment System (TVAS).

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Posted in News, Successes

In Indiana, Good Policy Leads to Better Results for Children

There is a real link between good education policy and improved outcomes. This theory shines through in a recent Chalkbeat article that discusses the growth of public charter schools in Indiana after the state strengthened its law in 2011.

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Posted in News

Parents Taking Big Risks for School Choice

Washington D.C. has cracked down on parents from Maryland and Virginia who lie about where they live so that their children can attend D.C. schools. Education Watchdog reports that D.C. officials conducted 70 investigations for residency fraud last year. The stakes are high for these parents: those who commit residency fraud face up to 90 days in jail and may be required to pay back tuition, which can come in at $15,000 per year.

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Posted in News

California Charter Schools Association Responds to LA Times Oped on Public Education

Following the publication of an opinion editorial in the Los Angeles Times that directs a series of unfounded criticisms at public charter schools, Jed Wallace, president and CEO of the California Charter Schools Association wrote the following response:

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Posted in News

What the Data Actually Say About Teacher Turnover

There is a persistent criticism that charter schools have dramatically high rates of teacher turnover due to burnout or dissatisfaction. However, national data paint a different picture.

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Posted in News, Research