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ERIC Number: EJ948345
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2011
Pages: 25
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 34
ISSN: ISSN-0098-9495
How Funding Shapes the Growth of Charter Management Organizations: Is the Tail Wagging the Dog?
Wohlstetter, Priscilla; Smith, Joanna; Farrell, Caitlin; Hentschke, Guilbert C.; Hirman, Jennifer
Journal of Education Finance, v37 n2 p150-174 Fall 2011
The Obama administration's education reform agenda has included an increased emphasis on the role of charter schools generally and a specific emphasis on charter management organizations (CMOs) in replicating best practices and helping "turn around" the lowest performing 5% of the nation's public schools. Through interviews with more than 50 leaders from 25 CMOs across the nation, this qualitative study delves into questions related to CMO growth and funding. Findings suggest that the ability of CMOs to grow their networks typically depends on the infusion of significant financial support. Although CMOs have accessed capital from a variety of public and private sources, interviews reveal that current funding mechanisms are both enabling and constraining the growth potential of the CMO model. CMOs generally rely on external funding to grow, and their growth is then shaped by the funders' financial capacities, requirements, and expectations. This study concludes with recommendations for policymakers about how CMO growth might be improved--specifically in national efforts to turn around failing schools. (Contains 41 footnotes, 2 tables, and 3 figures.)
University of Illinois Press. 1325 South Oak Street, Champaign, IL 61820-6903. Tel: 217-244-0626; Fax: 217-244-8082; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A