Earlier this month, Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg and Schools Chancellor Dennis M. Walcott announced that 54 new schools will open in the coming 2012-2013 school year, bringing the number of new schools opened under the Bloomberg Administration to 589.
The new schools will welcome more than 7,000 students next year, and over 21,000 when they grow to full size.
According to the mayor’s office, charter schools rank higher on parent satisfaction surveys than other schools across the City; perform better than schools they have replaced on the state’s annual math and reading exams; and graduate students at significantly higher rates, on average by 20 points and in some cases more than doubling that of schools they replace.
However, other studies are showing that charter schools are not necessarily outperforming public schools as was claimed previously.
A study produced by the National Education Policy Center (NEPC), housed at the University of Colorado at Boulder School of Education, with funding from the Great Lakes Center for Education Research and Practice found that on average, charter schools are not outperforming traditional public schools.
After controlling for population and environmental factors, there is no statistically significant difference between charters and non-charters in performance for grades 4, 6 and 7. Meanwhile, 5th-grade charter school students underperformed their peers enrolled in traditional public schools, according to the study.
What do you think? Do charter schools offer more options than public schools overall?