Whenever standardized test scores are released, charter schools invariably outperform traditional public schools (“Charter Schools’ Success Is an Illusion,” The Wall Street Journal, Aug. 27). That leads to further condemnation of the latter.
But the truth is that parental choice is the reason charter schools excel. When parents apply for their child’s admission, it’s prima facie evidence that they are involved in their education. It’s little wonder that charter schools post such impressive results.
In sharp contrast, traditional public schools remain the schools of last resort, legally required to enroll all who show up at their door regardless of ability, interest or motivation. Moreover, they can’t be expelled except for the most egregious behavior. Charter schools can and do push out students who for one reason or another are seen as a liability.
So before concluding that charter schools are inherently superior, we need to take a hard look at reality.
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