Friday, November 30, 2012

Group looking to hold Charter Schools accountable, too many failing but still taking kids.

While Gov. Scott Walker has already removed accountability measures for voucher schools, parents should be alerted to a rising problem where bad schools continue to remain open. With no way of knowing whether a school is failing, until it’s too late, parents are being sold on the idea that success can be gauged by higher enrollment.

Wrong. That means many are falling prey to a massive nationwide sales pitch, and it’s working. I've mentioned this before, but check out how voucher advocates talk up rising attendance, and never how well those schools are doing. Because they can't.

Supposed "small government" Republicans are fine with creating a defective parallel school system that drains taxpayer’s money and requires costly oversight. But that was their original argument about public schools. 

Things are bad right now, and most American don't know it. I'm hoping this article in Edweek changes a few minds about those "innovative" charter schools: 
As enrollment in charters schools continues to climb, a national organization is urging state legislators to draw a harder line on setting standards for opening those schools and ensuring that weak ones get shut down.

The National Association of Charter School Authorizers, is launching what it calls a "One Million Lives" campaign to press for changes in state law that hold charter schools and their authorizers more accountable for performance. By setting tougher standards for charter schools to open, and remain open, states will set a path for "smarter growth," the association argues, by putting many more high-quality schools in the mix.

By one measure, the number of charter schools going out of business is already on the rise. The rate of charter schools closing during the periods when their contracts are up for renewal has risen recently, from 6 percent in 2010 to nearly 13 percent in 2012 … But despite those shut-downs, the association says there's substantial evidence that many low-performing charter schools continue to skate by.

According to the organization's analysis, between 900 and 1,300 charter schools across the nation are among the lowest 15 percent of academic performers in their states … And the organization's effort will also have money behind it: NACSA officials said that a number of philanthropic organizations are providing financial support, including the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, the Robertson Foundation, and the Walton Family Foundation. 

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