State policies must change to differentiate and grow high-performing charter schools and weed out the low performers according to a report released today by the National Association of Charter School Authorizers (NACSA) and the Charter School Growth Fund (CSGF). The report, called “Replicating Quality: Policy Recommendations to Support the Replication and Growth of High-Performing Charter Schools and Networks,” calls on legislators, authorizers, and other policymakers to build a policy environment that encourages the creation of more great schools based on successful models. The report’s release coincides with National School Choice Week, the nation’s largest celebration of educational opportunity and effective education options for children.
“Ensuring that all children have access to high-quality education is the single most important issue of our time,” said Greg Richmond, NACSA president and CEO. “However, school choice only works if parents and students have good choices. We can create and multiply better schools for children by replicating excellence, not mediocrity.”
“High-performing charters are opening the door to a great public school education for many students, and policymakers play a critical role in creating the conditions that allow these high performers to grow,” said Kevin Hall, CSGF CEO. “We believe a roadmap of smart policies and practices is a critical step forward for the charter sector and all K-12 education.”
The charter school sector continues to expand as parents seek high-quality public education options. In 2012-2013, charter schools served more than 2.3 million students in nearly 6,000 schools. If recent growth trends con4nue, this number could double in size by 2025, with charters serving 4.6 million children and represen4ng nearly 10 percent of all public school students. NACSA is currently engaged in its One Million Lives campaign to ensure that every charter school is a high-performing one through stronger policies, stronger authorizing practices, and stronger leadership in the authorizing field.
The report, commissioned by NACSA and CSGF, was authored by Public Impact, a North Carolina-based education policy and consulting firm. It contains four interconnected strategies and 10 policy recommenda4ons that provide a roadmap for systema4cally improving the quality of the charter sector. The four strategies are:
- Differentiate among charter operators based on performance levels
- Build system capacity to cultivate and support high-performing individual schools and school networks
- Facilitate replication of high performers by reducing obstacles and adding support
- Accelerate closure of low-performing schools
“We have made incredible advances in offering children and parents choice in education, but there is still a great deal of work to be done to ensure that every child has access to a great school,” added Richmond.View Press Release PDF