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  • Charter schools provide quality education without the cost of private school.

    Charter schools consistently deliver higher test scores than public schools overwhelmed with bureaucracy. Unlike private schools, which also deliver a superior education, charter schools are paid for by tax dollars and thus free and open to all parents. Rather than seeking to shut down charter schools due to the supposed inequity they create, we should either create more charter schools or expand them into the standard for all public schools.

    Posted by: Pir4And
  • Charter schools are a good idea because they allow educators to try new teaching methods and allow for students to develop under new educational styles.

    Charter schools are a good idea because they allow educators to try new teaching methods and allow for students to develop under new educational styles. Charter schools are often released from the shackles of regulations that many public schools are under. With less regulations educators can come up with innovative teaching methods that may boost graduation rates and lead to higher college enrollment numbers. These new methods could eventually be adopted by regular public schools. Also, students who may have struggled in a rigid public school system may be more successful in a charter school system due to new styles of teaching and encouragement.

    Posted by: 53r3n3Piers
  • Charter schools are an excellent choice.

    My kids were attending a public school. One of my daughter struggled in Math. The teacher didn't offer to help het at all. The teacher had spent most of het time talking to another teacher across the hall from her door. I called the school to ask about my daughter progress the teacher never return my calls. I had just enroll my two daughters in charter school because I have heard great stories about how well the teachers teach the kids.

  • A Charter school attendant

    As a student who spent the majority of her life in a charter school, i was then and still am grateful that my parents made that choice for me. I attended a charter school between kindergarten and third grade. During my fourth year, my family moved out of state where i attended public school. After moving back in fifth grade, i was again accepted into my original charter school, where i continued my education there until graduation. The difference between public and charter schools is like night and day. I dreaded going to public school. The kids were harsh and i was bullied. Teachers did little about these conflicts and were also harsh to me and a few of my other classmates. I noticed that I was not taught the proper lessons and was falling behind my friends who stayed in the charter school. Public school teachers had little regard to their students and would take much of the class time for personal use, and they got away with it because of tenure. When I re-entered my charter school in fifth grade I was almost two grade levels behind! Fortunately, my top notch teachers helped me catch up and even surpass most of my classmates. Each one give me help when I needed and honestly cared for each one of their students. Their willingness to dedicate the majority of their time, run before and after school activities and becoming so attached to their students is outstanding. It was through the efforts of these teachers that I was able to graduate as salutatorian. I will definitely be putting my children into a charter school when the time comes.

  • Charter schools are, indeed, a good idea.

    Charters schools have proven to be effective in the education and discipline of students than those that attend public schools. With charter schools having an 11% higher graduation rate than public schools, charters prove that their methods of educating their students are more effective. Also, charters have a lower transfer-out rate than other public schools.

  • My kids have reach a higher level of academic success in the charter school system.

    When my first daughter was attending the public school, she was struggling with the classes due to the amount of children in a classroom the teacher did not have the time to respond to every student needs. Know, that all my kids are attending to the charter school, their confident level have improved. Contrast, my neighbor's children continue to attend public school and every day they have no homework.

  • Youre grades are higher and no more bullying...

    In my old school, I had very bad grades. I went to a public school and the main fact was I was being bullied and the teachers didnt help. Main charter school keep a tight and strict school that help student not get bullied. My grades are doing perfect right now and I can happily say I am not getting bullied anymore! I think that with charter schools, we can knock out some main bullying issues and help students learn better and have a more comforting school environment...

  • Gives you another way

    I like charter schools because if your child goes to a horrible public school, this gives you another way, with good teachers and better education. Charter schools are like a whole different school system. You get another chance and so does your child who will get the education they need.

  • Yes. Charter Schools CAN BE fantastic.

    Some charter schools are created out of a necessity in a neighborhood that had a school closed due to budget constraints. If the community that feeds in to that school have the organizational skills to take advantage of their state's charter school program, than so be it. That is the situation that my community was in. All of the benefits that came with the charter school were just a bonus to me.

  • Yes. Charter Schools CAN BE fantastic.

    Some charter schools are created out of a necessity in a neighborhood that had a school closed due to budget constraints. If the community that feeds in to that school have the organizational skills to take advantage of their state's charter school program, than so be it. That is the situation that my community was in. All of the benefits that came with the charter school were just a bonus to me.

  • I hate them.

    Charter school regulations vary greatly from state to state as do state-level achievement tests, which makes it difficult to compare school results or draw conclusions on a national basis. Parents who choose charters are often drawn to their small size and personalized learning environments, regardless of what the numbers say about academic performance.

  • Class size might not be that small in charter schools

    I don't know much about charter schools, my kids have only attended public schools, I am reading this comments just because my son is about to enter middle school and we are considering our options. I have read several comments that charter school class sizes are small "just about 25" If you consider that small, you should know that public schools classrooms rarely reach that number. On average, there are 18 students per teacher. I know this b/c I am teacher substitute and I see it.

  • Charter schools exclude poor performing students

    Students that do not "make the grade" are shown the door. One way or another, kids that don't do well at charter schools leave and return to the few public non-charter schools left. This leaves the non-charter public schools to pick up the pieces and continue to complete with the charter schools.

  • Not a Level Playing Field

    Charter schools are school choice and not parent or student choice. Like a football team, a student has to make the cut. After that, if for some reason, such as discipline, the student may be expelled and sent back to public school. Therefore, the public school will have more difficult students than a charter school.

    For that reason alone, I cannot see why charter schools are not more successful than they are. I read charter schools produce results that 1/3 better than public schools, 1/3 worse and 1/3 the same.

    Public schools are more expensive for many reasons. Among them are the unfunded mandates such as English as a second language, Special Education, home tutoring for the home bound, driver's education, sport teams, psychologist, to name a few.

    Others complain that it is teacher unions, high teacher pay and pensions. The latest reading says the burn out rate for public school teachers is in regular education is 3-5 years. That used to only be true of Special Education teachers 10 years ago. So teacher pay on average is low due to very few years of experience.

    High teacher pay is also based on levels of education. First, few will seek advanced degrees because they want to leave the profession. That is evidenced by all the early retirements of the old guard. They rather take a smaller pension and get another job. Next, there are so many extra duties, there is little time for advanced degrees. Teachers load the school buses, monitor the cafe, monitor the halls, tutor after school, have school meetings after school, put lesson on the net, and load the buses after school.

    What about all those summers off? I taught during the good old days. I used my first 15 summer to get my advanced degrees. Something that I would not do today because the pay back is no longer there.

    Then people talk about the voucher system as a means to even out the inequalities of rich and poor districts. Nobody even explains what the voucher system means. People assume it means it funds the complete tuition.

    I read one article that said the voucher covers a percentage of the tuition and the parents must pay the rest.

    Schools are district based. Let's say a rich district pays $14,000 per student. A poor district pays $5,000 per student. Even it the voucher covered the entire tuition for a poor student, where does the money beyond the $5,000 come?

    Nobody has yet to do a double blind experiment to determine which school system is superior.

    Every argument is testimonial. A student graduating from a charter school may like it, but has no way of comparing from experience an education in a public school. It is like saying my dog is better than your dog because it is my dog.

    To further complicate things, I'm confident that a voucher in one state would be different than a voucher in another state or for that matter, from school district to school district.

    I'm retired now, so I have no bias in this matter. But clearly, those that run a for profit charter school will have a bias.

    The TV show "60 Minutes" did a story on one group of charter schools run by a man from Turkey in 2012. The TV show took no stand, but just reported what it discovered.

    The charter school was a source vouchers to hire Turks from Turkey. The English teacher was interviewed and I could not understand him.

    The pay scale looked good, until the TV show interviewed a woman that was divorced from a Turkish teacher at that charter school. The teachers are required to kick back 40% of their pay back to the school.

    Again, that is one group of charter schools. But I believe a for profit organization has less government supervision and therefore is more likely to cook the books like Enron, AIG and so forth.

    What happens if you spend 5 years in a charter school and it closes for cooking the books or other reasons? Who keeps the school records so transcripts may be generated for job applications years later? How does credit transfer from charter school to charter school to public school and maybe back to charter school in our mobile civilization?

    What makes it so difficult to compare is that schools do not come up with a tangible product like a lawnmower. If inferior lawnmowers are produced, the company will go out of business in a year or two. A public or charter school have test results that maybe manipulated. More than one school has already be caught changing answers on tests. Many more have come under suspicion because there are so many changed answers on the tests.

    There is a much simpler way to make public schools better. Have real enforceable consequences for tardy, absences and behavior. Instead, it is the teachers' fault for not having a better lesson plan.

    I read an article where a Mother had to pay $2,000 in increments for her son's transgressions at $5 a pop.

    For now, we are not comparing apples to oranges. We are comparing apples, to oranges, to grapes, to white mice etc.

    I'm no expert. I just report on what I have read as I try to sort out an answer to this question for myself.

    I lean towards "no" because of the larger chance of abusing our tax dollars in a for profit charter school.

    By the way, google, "non-profits are very profitable." Few of these articles have anything to do with schools.

    Unfortunately, we live in a society of corporations that do not believe in integrity like Goldman Sax bet against the investments they sold to individuals. I think that is still in court. There are many more examples.

    The Waltons of Walmart are pushing charter schools with millions if not a billion dollars and expanding their effort. Civic minded? If they were civic minded, they would pay more than minimum wage for most associates.

    Bill Gates might know a lot about computers, but what does he know about schools? Remember, there is no limit to greed. I see schools as the new cash cow.

    Somebody better than me should sit down and come up with a REAL scientific study of this situation. I will go along with the winner.

  • No, Charter schools are waste of time.

    Only the 17% of charters have out-performed and 83% have failed or haven’t done any better. Also, they try new method for 3-5 years, and when it doesn’t work they just close down. Then, how about students who had been going there? They had wasted their years to get educations. They would have to go to next grade, but since they hadn’t learn things properly, the chance they would succeed is extremely low.

  • Charter schools are not a good idea because they spread the educational dollars to widely.

    Charter schools are not a viable alternative to conventional education because they spread the educational dollars too widely and create a larger bureaucracy than is necessary to educate the masses. While charter schools may please parents temporarily with promises, many fail to deliver an adequate education given the monies given to them.

    Posted by: ThegaXen
  • What about everyone?

    I dont get the idea of taking some students and giving them certain opportunities while taking money from underfunded schools. If charter schools are a good idea then their format should be expanded to all schools. It makes no sense to create something for public education that 90-95% of student have no access to.

  • They waste money on grant consultants

    They hire unreliable sources and pay big bucks to them without meeting them in their offices and really learning if these private consultants can be trusted!! I am concerned that, once again, our tax dollars are being wasted and lining a wasteful pocket! The children don't matter and the motive of these consultants are pure greed. Grant managers should be in-house where paid employee can be monitored and not out- sourced!

  • There are good and there are bad, both charter and public. However, the odds are stacked against public schools....

    Charters have many uncertified young teachers, usually via TFA, with 5 weeks of training. There is high teacher turnover. The classes are usually run like the military. The children are an afterthought; to be seen and not heard. Perhaps parents like the "safety" of a charter rather than a public school in a bad neighborhood, but their children aren't learning anything real; they are being taught to the test. There is no nurturing; they are treated like little prisoners, and that is tragic.

    If public schools would be fully funded, there would not be this fabricated "crisis" that public schools are failures. They are not. Shame on the politicians and disgusting things like Michelle Rhee and Arne Duncan who don't know the first thing about education, yet promote the destruction of our public schools so the likes of Walmart, Gates, Koch and Broad can profit off the public tax dollars. Shame on them all.

  • Charter schools vary too much to define them as bad or good, but the effect they will have on public education is bad.

    Charter schools DO NOT receive higher scores than public schools. They are about the same and vary based on socioeconomic population. Charter schools do NOT have less regulations for teaching strategies in the classroom. Teachers have as many restrictions on them in charter schools as they do in public schools. If you mention testing, most charters are still accountable to rigorous testing and SHOULD be. In fact those that are not are not able to claim that they are more or less effective than public schools because there is no accountability.

    Overall, there are HORRIBLE charter schools that are as bad as some religious private schools in which they are not held accountable, they teach poor curriculum, and they bar those with disabilities and behavior problems completely from their student base. Then there are good charter schools who are able to, through immense funds provide effective learning environments for students who come from disadvantaged situations. If the same funding were provided to public schools the same results would be achieved.

    However the existence of charter schools, and the lies that proponents of charter schools (those who attempt to turn education into a business) tell will effectively destroy public schools. Charter schools will collect the students who have engaged parents and come from higher socioeconomic brackets leaving only those with disengaged parents, and low expectations to remain in the public schools, effectively increasing the education gap between these two groups, and turning public schools into an inhospitable environment for ALL students.

    Many charter schools do not require credentials from their teachers and incur high teacher turn-over rates from expectations, such as working 120% FTE without extra pay and then non-renewing them if they desire to have a more sane work-load. Teachers in public schools already put in more than 60-hour work weeks most weeks if things like grading, planning, extra-curricular events, and school functions are factored in.

    Studies show that schools that host happy teachers, who are experienced and comfortable in their jobs, produce vastly more well-prepared students than any other education model.

    Charters see students as "products" and parents as "customers". A business minded charter will do all they can to please their customer, however in the course of doing their jobs well, teachers will many times have to take actions that will DISPLEASE their "customers", such as holding students accountable for turning in work or for behavior. Charters would avoid holding students accountable and deny them very important lessons of growing up to please their "customers".

    The case for charter schools is built on lies and number manipulation, which is funded by profiteers who want to make money from your children, not educate them. Public schools could use that money to provide more effective teachers for everyone.

    Things can be learned from the charter school experiment, but it should not be seen as the solution to education. It never will be, and if allowed to continue for too long, it will be the demise of education.


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