The Hype Behind Charter Schools: Do We Know Enough about Charter Schools to Justify a Significant Expansion in This Educational Model?

By Resnick, Michael A. | District Administration, July-August 2010 | Go to article overview

The Hype Behind Charter Schools: Do We Know Enough about Charter Schools to Justify a Significant Expansion in This Educational Model?


Resnick, Michael A., District Administration


SPURRED BY THE PROSPECT OF being awarded millions in Race to the Top grants, several states have removed or raised caps on the number of charter schools they will allow to be authorized.

And financial support for charters has been flowing in from various foundations and corporations--including most notably a recent $325 million commitment from JPMorgan Chase.

But are charters outperforming traditional public schools sufficiently to warrant this priority being placed on them? And where charters are succeeding, do we know enough about the reasons why to justify this significant expansion?

The Research

Educators and policymakers who want to learn more about the facts can find a good resource in the recent Center for Public Education study, Charter Schools: Finding Out the Facts (available at www.centerforpubliceducation.org), which examines the most sound research to date. The results may surprise you.

As it turns out, research shows that charter schools do not justify the level of promotion and support they are receiving. A 2009 CREDO study (Center for Research on Education Outcomes) from Stanford University found that just 17 percent of charters outperformed traditional public schools, while 46 percent performed the same and 37 percent did worse. In other words, 83 percent of charters were no better or worse than traditional public schools.

Since the methodologically sound CREDO study involved 15 states and the District of Columbia--representing 70 percent of the national charter school enrollment--significant weight needs to be given to its findings. A number of other studies, however, involve success stories of specific schools or districts, such as the Hoxby study of New York City's charters. But those case studies do not fully isolate the reasons for success or whether the favorable conditions can be readily found or replicated elsewhere. Others look at factors outside test scores as their basis for claiming better comparisons with traditional public schools.

[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED]

Many charters are established as alternatives to poorly performing schools in low-income communities with high enrollments of African-American or Hispanic students, but it's important to note that nationally their performance is mixed in this area. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

The Hype Behind Charter Schools: Do We Know Enough about Charter Schools to Justify a Significant Expansion in This Educational Model?
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.