The results of a recent study by a Stanford economist strengthens the case for charter schools by debunking the myth that charter school student outperform traditional students because only “the most motivated students and engaged parents are the ones who apply for the spots.” Professor Caroline Hoxby found the test scores of students who successfully applied for a seat in the district’s charter school lottery were consistently above those students who applied, but did not secure enrollment. Additionally the study revealed:
- By the third grade, according to the study, the average charter school student was 5.3 points ahead on state exams in English compared with students who were not admitted to the charter schools. In math, the students were 5.8 points ahead. Most tests are scored on a scale of roughly 475 to 800.
- Dr. Hoxby’s study found that the charter-school students, who tend to come from poor and disadvantaged families, scored almost as well as students in the affluent Scarsdale school district in the suburbs north of the city.
- Hoxby said in an interview. “In terms of life outcomes, I think we just don’t know yet. This is not the silver bullet, but this is showing a major and lasting difference.” (certainly more effective than the Governor’s touted pre-school programs)
The study reinforces what we’ve been saying about the charter schools and their ability to deliver quality education at a fraction of what we spend on traditional public schools. The evidence is so overwhelming that even the American Federation of Teachers had a hard time dismissing the results. AFT President Randi Weingarten, insisted New York City’s charter schools aren’t representative of the nation’s, because . . . they are of higher quality than elsewhere.