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ERIC Number: ED387936
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1995-Aug
Reference Count: 0
Charter Schools...What Are They Up To? A 1995 Survey.
Education Commission of the States, Denver, CO.; Minnesota Univ., Minneapolis. Hubert H. Humphrey Inst. of Public Affairs.
This booklet presents findings of a study that gathered information about charter schools. Representatives of more than 170 public charter schools were surveyed by mail, telephone or at national and regional meetings. Approximately 120 surveys were returned by representatives of 110 charter public schools in seven states--California, Colorado, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, New Mexico, and Wisconsin. Findings indicate that most charter schools were small; the mean size was 287 students. Two-thirds of the schools were designed to serve a cross-section of students, and 56 percent were designed to serve at-risk students. The most frequently cited academic focus was "integrated interdisciplinary curriculum," followed by "technology" and "back to basics." The most common methods of reporting student progress included standardized tests, student portfolios, parent surveys, and student demonstrations of mastery. The biggest barriers to starting a charter school were lack of startup funds, finances, and problems with facilities. Respondents offered the following advice to those considering operating a charter school: (1) establish a clear vision and mission; (2) allot plenty of time for planning; and (3) be prepared to work hard. They also urged legislators to provide sufficient autonomy for the schools via contracts with groups other than local school districts, direct state funding, and freedom from local labor-management agreements. Thirty tables are included. Appendices contain a copy of the survey and an excerpt from an April 1995 "Policy Brief" on charter school activities across the United States. (LMI)
Descriptors: Charter Schools, Educational Finance, Educational Objectives, Elementary Secondary Education, Institutional Autonomy, Public Schools, School Demography, School Restructuring, State Action, State Legislation
ECS Distribution Center, 707 17th Street, Suite 2700, Denver, CO 80202-3427 (Stock No. SI-95-1; $7.50 plus $2.50 postage and handling; accepts prepaid orders and honors organization purchase orders; no credit cards; discounts available for bulk orders of single publications); Center for School Change, Hubert H. Humphrey Inst. of Public Affairs, 234 Humphrey Center, 301 19th Ave. South, Minneapolis, MN 55455 ($10 includes postage and handling).
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Tests/Questionnaires
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Education Commission of the States, Denver, CO.; Minnesota Univ., Minneapolis. Hubert H. Humphrey Inst. of Public Affairs.