Charter School Analysis Essay

1703 Words Nov 14th, 2013 7 Pages
Mike Schmidt

Statement of Issue:
Since the first charter school opened in Minnesota in 1992 (Minnesota Dept. of Education Website), America has seen charter schools move from a fringe educational alternative to an accepted and useful tool in public education. It is clear that charter schools are continuing to grow in popularity and student population, even with conflicting evidence about their effectiveness. This review will evaluate the necessity for strong educational leadership, a clear educational charter with a defined vision and financial backing, and built-in mechanisms and criteria for accountability in establishing an effective charter school.

History of Issue:
Charter schools are generally attributed to an idea by Ray
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Because of the stress placed on students changing schools, a charter should not be approved without documented financial and management plans. Moving students to a new school just to close it for what are preventable or foreseeable reasons simply does the students’ long term education a disservice.
While these aspects of charter schools have been very important in beginning this movement, ultimately it is the effectiveness of charter schools that will determine their future. Evidence regarding the aggregate effectiveness of charter schools is mixed. Most famously, the 2009 study by the Center for Educational Outcomes stated that “17 percent, provide superior education opportunities for their students. Nearly half of the charter schools nationwide have results that are no different from the local public school options and over a third, 37 percent, deliver learning results that are significantly worse than their student would have realized had they remained in traditional public schools.” While those numbers resonate like a failure of the charter experiment, when examined further, some of those claims fall about. In his article “Improving Charter School Accountability: The Challenge of Closing Failing Schools,” David Osborne states that the fallacy in this study is that the majority of the evidence comes from “a student’s first year in a charter schools.” This taints the study because “when…