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November 12th, 2012
Failing public schools: Should they learn from thriving charters?
What makes a charter school succeed and how exactly can we transfer these ideas to failing public schools? These questions are examined in Roland G. Fryer’s widely talked about report, “Learning From the Successes and Failures of Charter Schools,” Takepart.com reports. Fryer is the CEO of EdLabs and an economics professor at Harvard University, the report was published as part of The Hamilton Project (the Brookings Institution). The report has been touted as a great way for modeled successful charters to “cross-pollinate” with failing public schools. Critics, however, have said charters are being favored as education policy over reforms that might be more cohesive with the traditional public school system. Fryer studied data from 35 charter schools of varying success levels in New York City to determine what separated the high achievers from those that failed. What he discovered was intriguing. The usual measurements, such as class size and amount spent per student, were not as important to reading and math scores as other school-wide implemented practices…