School Choice & Charters Opinion

Pulling Rank

By Sara Mead — January 11, 2011 1 min read
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Two very different sets of state rankings are out this week. The big one is Ed Week‘s (do I really need to disclose that they’re hosting my blog?) annual Quality Counts report, which includes the usual state-by-state highlights and rankings, as well as special reports honing in on how the education impacts of state budget crunches. Rick Hess should be especially pleased that one of these stories looks at the need to and challenges of reigning in growth in personnel costs, and another looks at achieving efficiencies in special education. There’s also good news around increased coordination and better transitions between early childhood and the K-12 public school system, although the indicators here remain blunt.

A second, and very different, set of rankings is the Center for Education Reform’s annual ranking of state charter school laws. I have my quibbles with them, and other rankings have emerged recently that I like better, but CER’s rankings remain a useful source of information on charter laws, they’re generally right about who’s at the top and bottom of the spectrum here, and their big-picture conclusion about the crapitude of many state charter school laws (which support neither supply, flexibility, nor quality) is dead on.

Not surprisingly, the states at the top and bottom of these two rankings are very different. Discuss as you will.

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The opinions expressed in Sara Mead’s Policy Notebook are strictly those of the author(s) and do not reflect the opinions or endorsement of Editorial Projects in Education, or any of its publications.