Charter Schools Essay

1617 Words Sep 30th, 2009 7 Pages
Charter Schools:
The Future of Education?

For decades the American education system provided parents with three choices: public, homeschool or private school. If they chose public then their child(ren) would be assigned to a school past on where they lived. However , “in the early 1990s a handful of states created independent public charter schools, providing opportunities for teachers and others to develop innovative schooling options “ (Palmer, Louann 2007). Not only did the creation of charter schools provide opportunities for the teachers, but gave parents a fourth option in educating their child(ren). Some veiw charter schools as a welcome addition to the public school sector, others doubt the benefit of these schools. There
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By having caps in place states are limiting the amount of competition for public schools.
While caps are one obstacle that charter school advocates will have to overcome there is an equally pressing obstacle. “Unequal financing is another obstacle. A Fordham Institute study found that on average charters receive $1,800 less per student than traditional public schools, despite serving more disadvantaged students” (Smarick, Andy 2008). If charter schools are to flourish they will need to fight for more state funding. After all “charter schools are public schools” (Center for Education Reform), and as a public school should be awarded the same funding as regular public schools. “Like district public schools, they are funded according to enrollment (also called average daily attendance, or ADA), and receive funding from the district and the state according to the number of students attending” (Center for Education Reform). However, as Andy Smarick stated they do not receive the same amount per student as district public schools.
Charter Schools like all education laws start at the state level. According to Louann Palmer, “the public has little understanding of the states' systems for deciding who gets, keeps, and loses the right to run a charter school” (2007). Those who are responsible for these decisions are called “charter school authorizers (or ‘sponsers’ in some states)” (Palmer, Louann 2007). An authorizer can be an individual, a non-profit organization or even a…