Charter Schools really work

Official data demonstrate that at least in New York City students enrolled in charter schools do better than those enrolled in regular schools. In fact even charter schools students who face the challenges of poverty and dangerous neighborhoods do well and in some cases better than regular students from more affluent parts of town. These amazing results have been summarized by Eva Moscowitz, a true pioneer who is the founder and CEO of Success Academy Charter Schools, in a recent WSJ op-ed piece. Here are some excerpts from her article:

“I grew up in Harlem in the 1960s and early ’70s. My brother and I attended a failing school where we were the only white students. My parents, both professors, supplemented our education at home, but we understood that our classmates were wholly dependent on the inadequate education the school offered. Even at that young age I perceived this as a terrible injustice.”

“Thirty years later, when I was again living in Harlem and ready to send my own son to school, those same schools were still abysmally low-performing. In 2006, when I opened my first charter school in Harlem, the district schools were still failing.”

“Today, there is a different story to tell about Harlem, and it is thanks to a school-choice movement that has given rise to dozens of high-performing charter schools. Today, almost half of the students in Central Harlem attend a charter school; in East Harlem, a quarter do.”

“The results of the 2017 New York state tests were [recently] released… They demonstrate how transformative this [charter schools] development has been for Harlem residents. In Central Harlem, for example, the number of students meeting rigorous, Common Core math standards has more than doubled since 2013—from 1,690 to 3,703. Students attending charter schools account for 96% of that growth. Results for English language arts are similarly inspiring.”

“The highest performing charter schools, like Success Academy, have actually reversed the achievement gap. Black and Hispanic students from Central Harlem’s seven Success Academy schools outperform white students across the city by 33 points in math and 21 points in reading; low-income students outperform the city’s affluent students by 38 and 24 points in math and reading respectively.”

“Parents now have the freedom to choose and they are choosing charter schools. It is our responsibility as New Yorkers to give them more of what they want: public schools that are engines of opportunity rather than roadblocks to success.”

–Eva Moscowitz, Test Scores Don’t Lie: Charter Schools Are Transformative, The Wall Street Journal

Aug. 24, 2017

Ms. Moskowitz is founder and CEO of Success Academy Charter Schools.