Charter schools

More than 6,000 charter schools now operate in the United States

The number of charter schools surpassed 6,000 at the start of the 2012-13 school year, as these schools — publicly financed, but privately run — steadily increased by 7 percent throughout the United States that year. This annual growth contributed to a 47 percent increase in the number of charter schools over the seven years since […]


What U.S. schools can learn from Poland

By any measure, Poland has made remarkable education progress since the fall of the Berlin Wall. On the most recent 2012 international tests of 15-year-olds, known as PISA tests, Poland ranked 9th in reading and 14th in math among all 65 countries and sub-regions that took the test. It used to be on par with the […]


The teaching profession is becoming less gray and less green, but more teachers are leaving poor schools

Much ink has been devoted to the teaching profession’s increasingly gray and green complexion — the profusion of teachers at the two extremes of the age spectrum. There are lots of veteran teachers older than 50. Meanwhile, school systems have hired hundreds of thousands of cheaper newbies without much experience in the classroom. That leaves the U.S. school […]


Top 10 teachers in Florida illustrate how messy and absurd the new teacher data is

This week of February 24, 2014 the State of Florida was forced to dump a boat load of data on its teachers into the public domain (It lost a law suit to Times Union newspaper in Florida, which requested the data). Nearly every public and charter school teacher in the state is named. And next […]


Internet instruction favored more by wealthy than poor Americans

A fascinating opinion poll released January 29, 2014 by Harris Interactive and Everest College says that high-income Americans are more open to learning over the Internet than low-income Americans. Both groups prefer hands-on learning as their first choice (52% of Americans listed active participation through hands-on training as the best learning method). But the Internet […]


Arizona, Wisconsin and Colorado have the highest concentrations of charter schools in the nation

I was just looking at some updated “State Education Reform” statistics from the National Center of Education Statistics and was trying to make sense of the numbers of charter schools in each state. California has the most charter schools by far at 908, but it’s also the most populous state. So I decided to rank […]


Q&A with KIPP’s Dave Levin about Technology in Education

Dave Levin, co-founder of the KIPP (Knowledge is Power Program) network of charter schools, has a lot to be proud of. His schools, which focus on inner-city minority students, are now operating in 20 states and producing admirable test results and impressive numbers of college graduates. One of his Los Angeles schools, which uses a […]


Federal watchdog slams charter school data

The Government Accountability Office (GAO) issued a report in July, complaining that charter school data is so incomplete that it could not determine whether charter schools are avoiding non-English speaking students. “Specifically, for over one-third of charter schools, the field for reporting the counts of ELLs (English Language Learners) enrolled in ELL programs was left […]