Published Online: October 20, 2015
Published in Print: October 21, 2015, as Charter Schools

Report Roundup

Charter Schools

"Raising the Bar: Why Public Charter Schools Must Become Even More Innovative"

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Charter schools need to be more innovative, according to a report released this week by a pro-charter organization.

Although the report says charters, specifically those serving low-income minority students in urban areas, outperform their district counterparts in many cities, the sector hasn't done enough to push the envelope in the nearly 25 years since the first charter law was passed, according to the analysis funded by The Mind Trust, a nonprofit that helps incubate new schools in Indianapolis. The result is that many charters look similar to one another, and not that different from regular district schools. Furthermore, achievement gaps persist and charters have struggled to serve enough English-language learners and students with disabilities—issues that endure, the report says, because of a lack of innovation. Among the major barriers to innovation, the report lists risk-averse authorizers and philanthropists opting to back established models with a track record of success over untested ideas.

Vol. 35, Issue 09, Page 5

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