Public vs. Charter Schools Essay

2477 Words Sep 2nd, 2013 10 Pages
Public Schools vs. Charter Schools
The first day of school is a rite of passage for most children. The step from home or day care to school is huge: they are a big kid now. However, sometimes the local Public School, especially in rural or economically challenged areas, can be an uncertain, questionable and scary place, and yet parents are expected to entrust them with their five or six year old child. Some years ago, when my daughter was ready to enter school, she and I had just such an experience, and we began to seriously search for an alternative school for her to attend. What we discovered was a Charter School: a possible solution for parents, enabling them to take more control of their child’s education. For my daughter and
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According to Atila Abdulkadiroglu, many have adopted a “No Excuses” policy which is generally characterized by smaller sized classrooms, frequent testing, longer school days and more school days in the year, selective teacher hiring, strong student work ethic, and include an increased emphasis on discipline (Abdulkadiroglu 699-700). Charter Schools also expect a certain amount of parent participation: either in-classroom assistance, being an active component in the Parent-Teacher Organization, volunteering assistance with fund-raising activities, or wherever else the school may have need. Therefore, sending a child to a Charter School usually requires a significant investment of time and effort from the parents as well: for example, the school may not be able to provide transportation, hot lunches (meaning lunch must be packed every day), and whatever the school may expect in parent participation. Entrance into many of these acclaimed Charter Schools is not always that easy. There are frequently many, many students applying for just a few spots available. These schools typically employ a lottery system which gives each student an equal chance; however, there are just not enough spots available for all the students who wish to attend—someone always loses. In comparison, Public Schools are restricted by a massive hierarchy of educational bureaucracy: they must answer to
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