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School Choice & Charters Collection

Charter Schools at 25

Twenty-five years ago this month, Minnesota passed the country’s first charter school law. Since then, the charter sector has expanded exponentially to include dozens of states, thousands of schools, and millions of students. While the charter movement has benefited significantly from wealthy funders—which have been crucial in fueling its growth—it still faces a litany of criticisms. Among the most persistent: Charter schools have a harmful lack of diversity.

School Climate & Safety Video: A Tale of Two Charter Schools
Step inside the Avalon School in St. Paul, Minn., and the Alliance Collins Family College-Ready High School in Los Angeles to see how the charter movement has changed over the last 25 years.
June 13, 2016
Students arrive for classes at Alliance Collins Family College-Ready High School, a public charter school in Huntington Park, Calif.
Students arrive for classes at Alliance Collins Family College-Ready High School, a public charter school in Huntington Park, Calif.
Patrick T. Fallon for Education Week
School & District Management The Evolution of the 'Chartered School'
Charters have evolved from the original idea of allowing parents and teachers to create new kinds of public schools into a powerful movement driven, to a large extent, by private philanthropy.
Arianna Prothero, June 13, 2016
13 min read
Alana Ramadan tests Ron Darius Sledge, a kindergartner, in the hallway at Harvest Preparatory School in Minneapolis.
Alana Ramadan tests Ron Darius Sledge, a kindergartner, in the hallway at Harvest Preparatory School in Minneapolis.
Ackerman + Gruber for Education Week
School & District Management From Our Research Center Data and the Debate Over Diversity in Charters
Charter schools have long been criticized for a lack of diversity, but a national analysis reveals a varied demographic profile.
Arianna Prothero, June 13, 2016
6 min read

Vol. 35, Issue 34