School Choice & Charters

More Than 900,000 Students on Charter School Waitlists, Survey Finds

By Katie Ash — June 28, 2013 1 min read
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Charter schools’ wait lists across the country have stretched to 920,000 spots, says a new survey released by the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools.

That marks an increase of more than 300,000 names on waiting lists for charter school spots from last year, the charter advocacy organization found.

“Although the number of public charter schools is increasing rapidly—this year an additional 275,000 students enrolled in charter schools—this survey demonstrates that parental demand continues to outpace what is an already increasing supply,” said Nina Rees, the president and chief executive officer of the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools, in a press release.

Because many students have applied for admission at multiple charter schools, the 920,000 spots represent at least 520,000 individual students, said the survey.

About 67 percent of charters have students on waiting lists, according to the survey, with older charter schools averaging longer lists than less established ones. For instance, schools that had been open for six years or more had an average of 238 students waiting for openings, while charter schools open fewer than six years had an average of 178 students on their lists.

In related news, I will be attending the 2013 National Charter Schools Conference in Washington this Sunday through Wednesday. Follow me on Twitter @EWKatieAsh for the latest conference updates. I look forward to seeing many of you there!

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