Charter schools’ hidden advantage

It’s not at all surprising that most charter schools post far better outcomes than traditional public schools.  They do so because they actually choose those students they want to admit, while other public schools must by law admit all who show up at their doors (“Do Students Choose Their Charter Schools, or Is It the Other Way Around?” National Education Policy Center, Sept. 21). 

Charters can require that parents apply in person during the workday, write multiple essays and prove U.S. citizenship.  These hurdles by their very nature screen out low-income and non-English speaking parents.  As a result, charter schools essentially function as private schools.  Moreover, they only allow students to enroll at the start of the semester, whereas public schools must enroll students at any time during the school year.

(To post a comment, click on the title of this blog.)

2 Replies to “Charter schools’ hidden advantage”

  1. I’ve so saddened by the political and Covid-medical topics of discourse about education these days. Lesson plan ideas anyone? Your blog is still a touchstone of sanity and integrity. Thank you.

    My experiences teaching at a private school on Zoom during the pandemic convinced me that online learning was here to stay. It can be done SO well if students are taught and trained to be more self-directed. Of course we all need human contact but not the human detention centers we call school.

    After trying to be innovative and a change-agent in both public and private schools, I am starting to accept that I must carve out a third path if I am to be true to myself. I am proud to network with AERO (Alternative Education Resource Organization) although I do not know my future path.

    Charter schools are basically a scam to confuse good parents, abuse teachers, and help some people grift the public treasury. Anything positive they’ve accomplished could (and should) have been done within traditional schools. Charters cynically teach to the standardized tests that butter their bread.

    p.s. shoutout to Labor Lawyer, miss your voice and hope you are well.

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  2. So discouraging to hear what you are experiencing. If traditional public schools played by the same set of rules as charters, there would be little, if any, difference in outcomes. But of course, charters possess essentially diplomatic immunity. I taught for 28 years in the Los Angeles Unified School District. I would not last a week today.

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