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ERIC Number: EJ1130147
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2017-Mar
Pages: 22
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0895-9048
From the Delta Banks to the Upper Ranks: An Evaluation of KIPP Charter Schools in Rural Arkansas
Rose, Caleb P.; Maranto, Robert; Ritter, Gary W.
Educational Policy, v31 n2 p180-201 Mar 2017
Knowledge is Power Program Delta College Preparatory School (KIPP DCPS), an open-enrollment charter school,1 opened in 2002 in Helena, Arkansas. KIPP DCPS students have consistently outperformed their peers from neighboring districts on year-end student achievement scores, and KIPP's national reputation led Arkansas lawmakers to exempt KIPP from the state's charter school cap. Yet, skeptics of KIPP in particular, and charter schools in general, voiced a concern that the apparent KIPP advantage in student achievement may have been due to the prior academic ability of the students who selected into KIPP rather than to the KIPP school itself. Furthermore, some KIPP critics have argued that student attrition at KIPP schools accounts for the apparent KIPP advantage. Until now, no prior study has rigorously compared performance of KIPP students with traditional public school peers on matched observable academic and demographic variables or carefully considered student attrition rates at KIPP DCPS. Here, we begin by summarizing prior evaluations of KIPP schools nationally. Next, we carefully examine student attrition from 2005 through 2011, and we find that KIPP DCPS attrition resembles that found in nearby traditional public schools. Finally, using regression models that control demographic and prior academic indicators, we find that KIPP DCPS students gain significantly more each year on standardized assessments than do their matched peers. These results are important as nearly all prior empirical work on KIPP schools has been conducted in urban settings. Despite the fact that many rural students struggle academically or attend struggling schools, we know relatively little about the potential benefits of No Excuses charter schools in rural areas, such as KIPP DCPS.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Information Analyses; Reports - Research
Education Level: Secondary Education; Grade 5; Intermediate Grades; Middle Schools; Elementary Education; Grade 8; Junior High Schools; Grade 6; Grade 7
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Arkansas
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A