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ERIC Number: EJ1038122
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2014-Feb
Pages: 21
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 56
ISBN: N/A
ISSN: EISSN-1573-1812
One Size Does Not Fit All: Understanding the Variation in Charter Management Scale-Up
Farrell, Caitlin; Nayfack, Michelle B.; Smith, Joanna; Wohlstetter, Priscilla
Journal of Educational Change, v15 n1 p77-97 Feb 2014
The prevalence of charter management organizations (CMOs)--networks of charter schools overseen by a home office--has exploded in recent years but there is a paucity of research into how CMOs approach growth and the factors that influence their growth plans. In this qualitative study, we examine how a set of 25 older, more established CMOs approached growth. Findings suggest that strategies for scale-up varied depending on the external policy environment and the internal organizational capacity of the CMO. In addition, CMOs approached growth from one of three styles: premeditated, opportunistic, or organic. Finally, longitudinal data reveal that CMOs often struggled to meet their growth targets; fewer than half of the sample CMOs met or were on track to meet their projected scale-up targets. From these findings emerged a key source of tension: On one hand, CMOs are facing pressure from policymakers and foundations to grow and expand rapidly. On the other hand, scaling-up too quickly or in ways that fall outside of the CMO's mission can lead to serious consequences for the organization, its schools, and students. Our research aims to contribute to this debate by demonstrating that "one size does not fit all" for CMO scale-up, a lesson important for policymakers, educators, and researchers alike.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A