School Choice & Charters

Churn, Burn, and Persistence: The Charters & Choice News Roundup

By Arianna Prothero — June 12, 2015 1 min read
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Keeping teachers in charter schools and charter school graduates in college are two much talked about issues facing the sector, and both are featured in this week’s Charters & Choice News Roundup.

To and through... Although some charter schools have been very successful at getting disadvantaged students to college, many of those young people still weren’t earning degrees, reports NPR’s Alexandra Starr:

No churn, no burn... meanwhile, my Education Week colleague Stephen Sawchuk writes about how the charter school sector is trying to ditch its poor reputation over teacher retention:

There's this narrative about charters burning and churning people and we do not in any way, shape, or form want to be a part of that," said Nella Garcia Urban, the vice president of talent for the Houston-based YES Prep school network. "We know that we see the greatest growth in our kids once our teachers have been with us about three years."

Today’s lesson is... not everything dubbed a school voucher in news and social media is actually a voucher. Here’s a handy explainer I wrote this week on the differences between various private school choice programs and why it matters:

Winning hearts and minds... Why one sports blogger changed his mind about ‘Tim Tebow’ laws, named for NFL quarterback Tim Tebow who, while home-schooled in Florida, was allowed to play on public school football teams. (Tebow recently signed a contract to play with the Philadelphia Eagles.) At first adamantly against such allowances for homeschooled students, Bob Cook who writes for Forbes now says he doesn’t care. Here’s one of several reasons he lays out for why home schoolers should be allowed to play on public school teams:

Finally, it might be a benefit for public schools to allow other kids on their rosters. Then, they're building connections with parents who might have otherwise turned away from them. It might not result in the kids transferring to their schools, but at least there could be the hope that when it's time for a referendum to increase the tax rate, you have a fresh set of parents who could be on your side."

And now for the kicker... although not strictly related to school choice, I thought this was an interesting story to end on anyway:

Have an idea for a story for me to include in next week’s Charters & Choice news roundup? Leave it in the comments section below or tweet it to @ChartersNChoice.

A version of this news article first appeared in the Charters & Choice blog.