Resources & Research

Report |

Success for English Learners in Charter Schools

This study explores trends in English Learner (EL) student enrollments and academic outcomes in California’s charter schools. Our data analyses included the use of publicly available data to review public charter school student performance with that of traditional school performance. To better understand best practices with English Learner students, we interviewed numerous leaders of charter schools that have high EL populations and strong academic outcomes with their EL student populations.

Article |

Challenges for Charter School with Special Education: Issues of Concern for Charter School Authorizers and Service Providers

Charter schools, as one type of school choice, have been attracting a growing number of students since first inception in Minnesota in 1991. Although charter schools are a fledgling reform, they are already a significant part of the federal and state efforts to improve schools and have a growing number of students. Like traditional public schools, charter schools accept all students equally.

Report |

Accountability for All: The Need for Real Charter School Authorizer Accountability in Michigan

In this report, we provide the first comprehensive review of
Michigan charter authorizers’ track records of school performance
and a first-ever letter grade scorecard for charter authorizers in
Michigan. Through this report, we also aim to:
• Inform: Provide nonpartisan data and information to
inform the growing policy debate about the Michigan
charter sector’s quality and accountability.
Report |

Charter School Programs Authorized by the Elementary and Secondary Education Act: A Primer

Charter schools are public schools of choice that are created in accordance with state laws and are publicly funded and tuition free. They are operated according to the terms of charters or contracts granted by public chartering agencies. The terms of charters typically provide charter school operators with increased autonomy over the operation of schools, often including exemptions from, or flexibility in the application of, many of the state or local regulations otherwise applicable to public schools.
Report |

Authorizer Hopping: Motivations, Causes, and Ways to Stop It

Charter schools identified for closure do not always shut their doors. Instead, some charter schools identify and “hop” to a new authorizer willing to work with them to avoid accountability and remain open. This brief for the National Association of Charter School Authorizers explores how and why authorizer hopping happens and offers recommendations to stop it.

Find the full report here.

Policy and Procedures |

Using School Improvement Grant Funds to Increase Access to High-Quality Public Schools

This policy paper outlines a set of proposals that would allow states to use School Improvement Grant (SIG) funds to open new and expand existing high-quality public charter schools. In January 2014, Congress took action to broaden states’ uses of SIG funds.

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This scorecard is the 2014 annual ranking of charter school law by The Center for Education Reform, which serves as an easy visual to break down the the relative ranking of legislation across different areas related to charter schools for all states with such laws.  

See the full scorecard here.

Toolkit |

Accountability in Action: A Comprehensive Guide to Charter School Closure 2012

This 2012 updated charter school closure guide from the National Association of Charter School Authorizers provides detailed information about procedures, case studies, a sample closure plan and checklist, and sample letters to various constituencies. The 90-page guide has nine chapters: Why Good Authorizers Should Close Bad Schools; Using Performance Frameworks for Strong Accountability; Planning and Managing School Closure: Timing, Process, and Appeals; Preventing Mid-Year Closure; Reaching Closure Decisions: The

Report |

Replicating Quality – Policy Recommendations to Support the Replication and Growth of High-Performing Charter Schools and Networks

This January 2014 report from the National Association of Charter School Authorizers and the Charter School Growth Fund identifies a set of key policies and practices that could dramatically accelerate the replication and growth of high-performing charter schools and charter networks. 

Brief |

Back to School Tallies: Estimated Number of Public Charter Schools & Students, 2013-2014

Each year, the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools contacts state departments of education and state charter school associations to obtain lists of new and closed charter schools for the academic year. The numbers presented in this report are estimates.