Celebrating 10 Years It's about great public schools.


Leader Voices

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

By James Merriman, CEO of the New York City Charter School Center

A Reflection on the Last 10 Years

In 2003, then as Executive Director of SUNY’s Charter Schools Institute, I found myself in conversations with philanthropists, charter leaders and officials at the New York City Department of Education (DOE) on what a new organization devoted to supporting charter schools in the City might look like. It would be a new organization, a public-private partnership between philanthropy and the DOE. Its mission would be to help grow a high-quality charter sector, one that would work in tandem with the Department as it sought to fundamentally reshape how it governed the schools it managed and transform New York City from a school system to a system of schools.

2014-15 State Test Score Analysis: Charters Better Serving African-American and Hispanic Students

Friday, August 14, 2015

By Michael Pih

On Wednesday, the New York State Education Department (SED) released scores from the third year of the Common Core 3-8 Assessments.   

Performance by African-American and Hispanic students in charter schools far exceeds that of their district counterparts. In Math, African-American and Hispanic charter school students outperform their district peers by +23.9 percentage points, and +18.4 percentage points, respectively. Gaps in ELA are smaller but still significant with a gap for African-American students in proficiency rates of +9.9 percentage points and for Hispanics of +6.8 percentage points. Given that charter schools enroll mostly students from these two subgroups (over 90%), this finding is significant and highly promising. Further, for students identified as economically disadvantaged, charter schools once again outperform their district peers. 

Charter Schools Remain Underfunded: New Report

Thursday, July 23, 2015

By Michael Pih

Today’s IBO report, Charter Schools Versus Traditional Public Schools: Comparing the Level of Public Support In School Year 2014-15,  shows that charter schools receive significantly less public support than do traditional district schools.  When compared to 2009-10, the last year for which the IBO calculated the data, the gap between traditional district schools and charter schools has grown more than five-fold. In fact, on average, charter schools receive over $1,400 less per pupil than traditional district schools compared to the $250 less per pupil they received in 2009-10.

New IBO Report: Positive Trends in NYC Charter Growth, Diversity, Backfilling & Achievement

Monday, July 13, 2015

By Michael Pih

Today, the New York City Independent Budget Office released a new report, School Indicators for New York City Charter Schools: 2013-14 School Year. The IBO has put out a series of similar reports for NYC traditional district schools for the last three years; this is the first such report on the charter sector. The report is a straightforward presentation of data and, commendably, takes pain to avoid editorializing.

Charters Tackle ELL Instruction

Monday, June 8, 2015

By Melissa Katz

It’s hard to believe that we’re approaching the end of the school year! As I reflect on the progress made this past year since I joined the Charter Center team, I already find myself looking forward to next school year. After conducting numerous, stimulating and informative school visits and English Language Learner (ELL) events this year, I would like to share with everyone some of the trends I’ve noticed throughout NYC’s ELL community:

Updated IBO Study: Special-Needs Students Staying in Charters

Thursday, January 29, 2015

The IBO has just confirmed what we have long known – charter school students stay in charter schools at higher rates than students in nearby traditional public schools (TPS). Even more counter to charter detractors’ claims– fewer charter school special needs students leave their schools than nearby special needs district students.

2013-14 School Quality Reports

Wednesday, November 12, 2014
The NYC DOE released its first School Quality Report from the 2013-14 school year. The report no longer includes an overall grade for each school, but instead presents multiple ratings on different aspects within 5 categories for charter schools: Student Progress, Student Performance, School Environment, Closing the Achievement Gap, and College and Career Readiness.

Why the ELL Gap?

Tuesday, October 7, 2014
In Why the Gap? English Language Learners and New York City Charter Schools, a new report from the Manhattan Institute, Dr. Marcus Winters uses NYC DOE data from school years 2008-09 to 2011-12 to follow charter and district school ELLs over time. (Winters previously studied special education in NYC charter schools.)