Monthly Archives: November 2016

Contrary to Reform Rhetoric Study Shows No Difference in Effectiveness in Teachers in High and Low Income Schools

11/13/2016 A recent report by the Mathematica’s Policy Research center found no difference in effectiveness of teachers in low and high poverty schools.  Eric Isenberg, the principal investigator on the project stated, “Contrary to conventional wisdom, we found only small differences in the effectiveness of teachers of high- and low-income students in our study districts, This suggests that the achievement gap arises from factors other than students’ access to effect teachers,”

New Study Finds Chicago’s Public Schools Outperform Charters

11/13/2016 A new study by Myron Orfield and Thomas Luce finds that, contrary to current perceptions, charter school performance in Chicago lags their much maligned public school counterparts even though charters should on the natural score higher because of self-selection by parents and students.

Here is the abstract: Charter schools have become the cornerstone of school reform in Chicago and in many other large cities. Enrollments in Chicago charters increased by more than ten times between 2000 and 2014 and, with strong support from the current mayor and his administration, the system continues to grow. Indeed, although state law limits charter schools in Chicago to 75 schools, proponents have used a loophole that allows multiple campuses for some charters to bypass the limit and there are now more than 140 individual charter campuses in Chicago. This study uses comprehensive data for the 2012-13 and 2013-14 school years to show that, after controlling for the mix of students and challenges faced by individual schools, Chicago’s charter schools underperform their traditional counterparts in most measurable ways. Reading and math pass rates, reading and math growth rates, graduation rates, and average ACT scores (in one of the two years) are lower in charters all else equal, than in traditional neighborhood schools. The results for the two years also imply that the gap between charters and traditionals widened in the second year for most of the measures. The findings are strengthened by the fact that self-selection by parents and students into the charter system biases the results in favor of charter schools.

Five Truths Disputing Claims Made about Charter Schools by Jeff Bryant

11/13/2016 The ever astute Jeff Bryant penned an article disputing claims made in several major newspaper editorials criticizing the NAACP for voting to oppose charter expansions. These truths are consistent with the evidence adduced in this website.

The five Bryant mentions are: There is no research consensus that charters score better than their public school counterparts; no consensus that charters produce better long-term results; they don’t enroll the same type of children; many tend to intensify segregation; and many use discriminatory disciplinary practices.

Massachusetts Voters Turn Down Charter Expansion

11/13/2016  In Massachusetts, an initiative to lift the cap on charter schools was handily defeated based on widespread opposition from the educational community because of the threat to public school funding.  In Georgia, a plan by the governor to create a statewide district for “failed schools” patterned after examples from other states, which have not worked, was also  defeated. .html Both measures were supported by large contributions from out-of-state charter advocacy and privatization groups but succumbed to the organized opposition of teachers, parents, and community members. In California, two propositions to continue a tax on the highest earners to support public education and a bond issue for school construction both passed by large majorities.


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