Friday, October 16, 2015
Do Charter Schools Outperform Public Schools? Apparently Not.
I was reading the New York Post opinion page and another so-called expert claimed that charter schools outperform public schools and that parents need more choice with a greater number of charter schools. Interestingly, a very respected education blogger, Gary Rubinstein has crunched the 2015 New York State numbers and found that the claim of charter school superiority is an illusion.
According to Gary Rubinstein the charter schools outperformed the public schools in Math but under performed the public schools in English. Therefore, based simply on test scores, the vast majority of charter schools failed to show that they're superior to the public schools. Moreover, Gary Rubinstein showed that despite the claim that charter schools have a poverty based population, his graph demonstrated that the charter schools had a poverty index lower than the public schools. Meaning that the charter schools had a lower percentage of students who were eligible for free lunch due to their economic need than the public schools.
When one considers that the charter schools have a lower percentage of English Language Learners and Special Education students and many refuse to backfill students who were expelled or encouraged to leave due to the charter schools draconian discipline and academic policies their failure to outperform public schools is shocking, to say the least. Add to that, lower class sizes during the testing years, constant test preparation, and high teacher turnover, the charter results are highly disappointing and shows that the charter school claims that they provide a superior education than the local public schools is simply a mirage.