School Choice & Charters

Charter Schools

By Caroline Hendrie — May 12, 2004 1 min read
  • Save to favorites
  • Print

Big Backing

Compared with last year, the U.S. Department of Education significantly increased the amount of resources it devoted to marking National Charter Schools Week. Officials fanned out last week across the country to underscore the Bush administration’s support for the independently run but publicly financed schools.

No fewer than 17 senior officials gave speeches during the week in 20 charter schools in 17 states and the District of Columbia, as well as at one statewide charter conference. Last year, eight officials visited 12 schools in six states, plus the nation’s capital.

“Charter schools are creative, innovative, and accountable,” U.S. Secretary of Education Rod Paige said during a May 3 speech to kick off the week at the SAIL (School for Arts in Learning) Charter School in Washington. Run by a local nonprofit organization that provides arts programming for children with special needs, the 6-year-old, 114-student school for grades K-6 won praise from Mr. Paige as an example of the “innovation that makes education great.”

To mark the fifth annual charter schools week, other senior department officials spoke at schools in Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Missouri, Nevada, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, and Texas.

In contrast, the department’s recognition of Teacher Appreciation Week—which also fell May 3-7—was more subdued. The main event was a statement by Mr. Paige on May 4 announcing that the department would be holding a “Research-to-Practice Summit” in Washington on July 20 to bring together effective teachers and prominent education researchers.

On the charter front, department officials noted last week that President Bush’s proposed budget for the 2005 fiscal year calls for lifting spending from $37.3 million to $100 million for grants to organizations that leverage funding for charter school facilities.

Funding would remain flat for a $200-million-a-year program that supports the planning and start-up of new charter schools. Also holding steady would be a $18.7 million allocation for matching grants to states that provide per-pupil funding for charter school facilities. That program is in its first year; the federal department is accepting applications until July 1.

Related Tags:

A version of this article appeared in the May 12, 2004 edition of Education Week


Jobs Virtual Career Fair for Teachers and K-12 Staff
Find teaching jobs and other jobs in K-12 education at the EdWeek Top School Jobs virtual career fair.
English-Language Learners Webinar English Learners and the Science of Reading: What Works in the Classroom
ELs & emergent bilinguals deserve the best reading instruction! The Reading League & NCEL join forces on best practices. Learn more in our webinar with both organizations.
This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Teaching Webinar
Challenging the Stigma: Emotions and STEM
STEM isn't just equations and logic. Join this webinar and discover how emotions fuel innovation, creativity, & problem-solving in STEM!
Content provided by Project Lead The Way

EdWeek Top School Jobs

Teacher Jobs
Search over ten thousand teaching jobs nationwide — elementary, middle, high school and more.
View Jobs
Principal Jobs
Find hundreds of jobs for principals, assistant principals, and other school leadership roles.
View Jobs
Administrator Jobs
Over a thousand district-level jobs: superintendents, directors, more.
View Jobs
Support Staff Jobs
Search thousands of jobs, from paraprofessionals to counselors and more.
View Jobs

Read Next

School Choice & Charters Opinion What's the State of Charter Schools Today?
Even though there's momentum behind the charter school movement, charters face many of the same challenges as traditional public schools.
10 min read
Image shows a multi-tailed arrow hitting the bullseye of a target.
DigitalVision Vectors/Getty
School Choice & Charters As Private School Choice Grows, Critics Push for More Guardrails
Calls are growing for more scrutiny over where state funds for private school choice go and how students are faring in the classroom.
7 min read
Illustration of completed tasks, accomplishment, finished checklist, achievement or project progression concept. Person holding pencil tick all completed task checkbox.
Nuthawut Somsuk/iStock/Getty
School Choice & Charters How a District Hopes to Save an ESSER-Funded Program
As a one-time infusion of federal funding expires, districts are searching for creative ways to keep programs they funded with it running.
6 min read
Chicago charter school teacher Angela McByrd works on her laptop to teach remotely from her home in Chicago, Sept. 24, 2020.
Chicago charter school teacher Angela McByrd works on her laptop to teach remotely from her home in Chicago, Sept. 24, 2020. In Montana, a district hopes to save a virtual instruction program by converting it into a charter school.
Nam Y. Huh/AP
School Choice & Charters Q&A How the Charter School Movement Is Changing: A Top Charter Advocate Looks Back and Ahead
Nina Rees, president and CEO of the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools, plans to step down as leader of the group at the end of the year.
6 min read
Nina Rees, CEO of the National Public Charter School Association.
Nina Rees, president and CEO of the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools, emphasizes that she has "always thought of [charter schools] as laboratories of innovation with the hopes of replicating those innovations in district-run schools."
Courtesy of McLendon Photography