Charter Schools are Taking Off

, Malcolm A. Kline, Leave a comment


charter schools photo

At least one form of very productive education disruption is growing exponentially.

“Parents can choose public schools for their children in 55 percent of the nation’s largest school districts, more than double the percent of such districts that offered school choice 15 years ago,” Grover J (Russ) Whitehurst writes in the Education Choice and Competition Index for 2015 compiled by the Brookings Institution, for which he toils.

“In addition, programs that allow students to enroll in public schools outside their home district are available in about 20 percent of the states. Additions to the menu of school choice in many locales include virtual (online) schools; home schooling; and affordable private schools, including those supported by taxpayers through such mechanisms as education savings accounts, vouchers, and tax-credit scholarships. And for parents who don’t get to choose schools through an enrollment system but can afford it, there is the tried-and-true approach of buying a home in a preferred school’s geographical assignment zone. Putting all these forms of choice together, a large majority of parents of school-aged children exercise choice.”

Brookings gives both New Orleans and Denver As, New York City an A- and Washington, D. C. a B+. In collecting its data, Brookings looks for school districts that offer “amount, variety and quality” in its traditional public and charter schools, Whitehurst said.

Photo by Office of Governor Baker

Photo by Office of Governor Baker