- Oct 2019
This report is the first step in developing an evidence base about how charter schools meet the needs of unique learners, how they can improve in this work, and what aspects of chartering as a governance model support or impede their ability to do so.
- Jun 2019
This report focuses on the work of DC School Reform Now. Since 2011, the organization has focused on making school choice work for families in Wards 7 and 8, two underserved areas of the nation's capital.
- Apr 2019
This report examines how New Orleans education officials have managed the return of nearly all of the city’s public schools to the control of the local elected school board for the first time since the state takeover of public schools in the wake of Hurricane Katrina.
- Jul 2018
This brief presents data on how special education students in Washington state are being served in charter public schools, using a national and local context.
- Apr 2018
An overview of the district-charter collaboration landscape and one strategy that many cities are pursuing: sharing instructional practices across district and charter schools.
- Feb 2018
This report examines recent efforts of districts and charter schools to share key instructional practices and offers recommendations for education leaders to move forward.
- Jan 2018
This report examines why charter school growth in the San Francisco Bay Area has slowed dramatically and offers solutions for cities nationwide to encourage the development of new high-quality schools.
- Nov 2017
This analysis examines 18 cities offering public school choice to determine whether 1) their education systems are continuously improving, 2) all their students have equitable access to high-quality schools, and 3) their strategies are rooted in the community.
- Nov 2017
This paper provides an honest assessment of the portfolio strategy’s strengths, weaknesses, and necessary evolution.
- Oct 2017
This brief, the first in a multiyear series examining DC School Reform Now’s innovative High Quality Schools Campaign, offers lessons for district and city leaders who want school choice to work for all families.
- Aug 2017
CRPE researchers discover distinct school differences in three cities and offer innovative, evidence-based solutions to help urban U.S. districts increase options so that families can find the right fit for their child.
- Jan 2017
Based on six years of research, this report explores why a growing number of districts and charter schools are choosing to work together, the costs and benefits of different types of cooperation, and the real impacts of successful collaboration on students and families.
- Dec 2016
This study explores families’ experiences choosing and enrolling in schools using the new Camden Enrollment, and provides recommendations for improvements to the system.
- Oct 2016
CRPE's new paper focuses on developing a common school performance framework, tool for measuring performance of an individual school using a defined set of metrics that is common to schools across different agencies or governing bodies.
- Aug 2016
This paper looks at why many cities have missed opportunities to create more lasting relationships between their district and charter sectors, and offers suggestions for fostering stronger partnerships that could help improve outcomes for all of the students in their cities.
- Apr 2016
This paper takes the first systematic look at costs associated with implementing personalized learning schools, how leaders of these schools choose to allocate their funds, and what it might take to make personalized learning financially sustainable on public dollars.
- Sep 2015
This brief provides guidance for education reporters seeking to interpret findings and draw conclusions about current school discipline research.
- Jan 2015
Published in coordination with A+ Denver, the report evaluates Denver's SchoolChoice enrollment system from 2012 to 2014.
- Dec 2014
This report summarizes CRPE's past two years of research and findings of special education in charter schools.
- Aug 2014
This working paper provides a systematic analysis of the field’s most rigorous studies on charter school achievement.
- May 2014
This fiscal analysis finds that early difficulties forecasting enrollment and revenue can undermine implementation of personalized-learning models that blend computer-based and teacher-led instruction.
- Mar 2014
This brief provides an introductory look at how leaders can effectively engage stakeholders during the design and implementation of a common enrollment system.
- Mar 2014
This issue brief explains how three cities—Denver, New Orleans, and Washington, D.C.—are addressing the issues involved with governing cross-sector enrollment systems.
- Aug 2013
This brief outlines challenges of producing rigorous and useful research on how students with special needs fare in charters and makes recommendations for designing studies needed to inform policy and practice.
- Dec 2012
Using wage and staffing data from states, this paper projects the financial and staffing implications of one innovative school model (the Rocketship lab rotation) to highlight potential impacts on the schooling workforce and total per-student spending.
- Nov 2012
This report examines the distribution of students with special needs in New York State charter and district-run schools. The analysis shows that different levels of comparison yield different results. The authors recommend investments in research to identify where and why underenrollment of students with special needs exists, and working with the charter community to develop innovative solutions.
- Sep 2012
This report evaluates lessons from U.S. charter school legislation and implementations to inform South Africa and other countries about how to achieve the best possible results with charter school policies.
- Jun 2012
This case study of the implementation of Baltimore City Public Schools' portfolio strategy explores how the district's reform work aligns with CRPE’s definition of the portfolio strategy and how it compares to the approaches taken in other districts.
- Mar 2012
This is the final report from The National Study of CMO Effectiveness, a four-year study designed to assess the impact of CMOs on student achievement and identify CMO structures and practices that are most effective in raising achievement.
- Jan 2012
This report from the National Study of CMO Effectiveness provides key findings from the study on CMO practices, impacts, and the relationships between them. The updated report also examines longer-term impacts of CMOs on high school graduation and college entry.
- Jan 2012
The 6th annual edition of Hopes, Fears, & Reality provides a clear roadmap for school districts and charter schools interested in working together to improve education options. The report explains the risks and technical challenges behind charter-district collaboration and provides powerful examples of how they can be overcome.
- Jan 2012
In this chapter, Tom DeWire of Baltimore Public schools draws on the experience of choice enrollment and assignment plans in Baltimore, New York, and Boston to illustrate the important questions that districts need to ask when designing such systems.
- Jan 2012
In this chapter Robin Lake and Betheny Gross argue that charter schools have a mixed track record on ensuring that students with special needs have effective options, but the reasons are complex, and the solutions are not obvious.
- Jan 2012
In this chapter Parker Baxter argues that by reimagining the distribution of funding, facilities, and other district assets without regard to whether a school is a district school or a charter school, districts can strike a unique and powerful bargain with charter schools: shared resources and shared responsibility.
- Dec 2011
This study of charter school unionization compared charter school collective bargaining agreements with traditional district contracts and found that, while the new contracts innovate in many ways, they could go much further given the opportunity to create agreements from scratch.
- Aug 2011
CRPE Senior Research Analyst Betheny Gross presented this overview of the latest evidence on choice policies including public school choice, vouchers, and charter schools at the National Conference of State Legislatures Legislative Summit 2011, in San Antonio, Texas.
- Jun 2011
Drawing from the experiences of high-performing charter school networks, this white paper examines why districts struggle to close the achievement gap, what portfolio district leaders can find when they look outside the traditional system for gap-closing solutions, and how new schools are able to do what traditional schools have not.
- May 2011
In February 2011, the Center on Reinventing Public Education convened a conference to help districts implementing school choice under the U.S. Department of Education’s Voluntary Public School Choice program. This paper summarizes the two-day conversation and lessons from the discussion.
- Jan 2011
This one-page brief summarizes a working paper that examines the variation in charter school performance in one state to assess one of the key levers of charter school policy: the decision about which types of organizations may authorize charter schools.
- Jan 2011
In April 2010, the Center on Reinventing Public Education and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation convened a group of researchers and financial analysts to discuss how to better understand the financing and sustainability of CMOs. This report summarizes the conversation and main themes that emerged from the meeting.
- Jun 2010
This interim report from the National Study of CMO Effectiveness explores how CMOs vary according to their theories of action, structural organization, and growth strategies and delves into the ongoing organizational and financial challenges that CMOs face.
- May 2010
This short policy guide to the book, Unique Schools Serving Unique Students: Charter Schools and Children with Special Needs, summarizes the findings from case studies and parent surveys. The brief identifies policy, research, and investment opportunities needed to confront the challenges charter schools and parents of special needs students face.
- Mar 2010
Drawing on an an original survey of hiring practices in charter schools and their local school districts in six-states, this paper offers an exploratory look at how charter schools compete for teachers across local contexts.
- Feb 2010
This book examines the real-world factors that can complicate, delay, and in some instances interfere with the positive cause-and-effect relationships identified by the theories behind school choice. Hill explains why schools of choice haven't yet achieved a broader appeal and details the key factors—including politics, policy, and regulation—that explain the delay.
- Jan 2010
This edition of Hopes, Fears, & Reality explores the lessons high-performing charter schools offer for other public schools, including the alignment of lesson content with state curriculum, frequent formative assessment mirroring high-stakes tests, and the importance of a school culture that exudes “a palpable urgency that communicates that the work is important.”
- Oct 2009
Study on four urban school districts experimenting with new school designs and new ways of holding schools accountable for performance by implementing a "portfolio strategy."
- Jul 2009
This report surveys the broad transportation landscape and conducts in-depth work with families in two cities to determine what role transportation plays in parents' school decisions, and how districts might address related issues.
- Apr 2009
Targeted at current and future charter school leaders, charter management organizations (CMOs), and charter governing boards, this brief outlines the challenges faced by current charter school leaders and provides practical recommendations for strengthening school leadership.
- Apr 2009
Targeted at charter school authorizers and state and local technical assistance providers, this brief outlines the challenges faced by current charter school leaders and provides practical recommendations for seeking out and developing high-caliber leaders for local charter schools.
- Apr 2009
Targeted at charter school leadership preparation programs and state and local charter school policy leaders, this brief outlines the challenges faced by current charter school leaders and provides practical recommendations for better preparation and on-the-job support.
- Dec 2008
By providing access to proven college-prep models (and suburban school performance expectations), charter schools appear to be offering something not otherwise available in many communities. In this chapter, Paul Hill explains this important trend in charter high schools.
- Dec 2008
In this chapter, Rick Hess and Bruno Manno make a compelling case that understanding what various types of students, parents, teachers, principals, school districts, and others want and need from the charter sector could allow greater targeting of charter schools and would also give focus to philanthropic investments and policy changes.
- Dec 2008
This overview of Hopes, Fears, & Reality: A Balanced Look at American Charters Schools in 2008 introduces the key areas explored in this year's volume and notes that charter schools are more different than alike, not only in terms of the populations they serve, the academic missions they pursue, and the results they produce, but also in their response to local need and capacity.
- Dec 2008
This year's edition explores how charter school achievement varies across the sector, how the educational strategies used by charters differ from those used in traditional public schools, how charters are providing unique opportunities to diverse student populations, and how growth efforts should be responsive to constituent demands.
- Sep 2008
In this report CRPE researchers explore the complex job of charter school directors, who may have little experience with facilities, finances, hiring, or strategic planning; some of the most serious issues for charter schools. A series of additional research briefs targets different audiences to highlight relevant information from the report.
- Sep 2008
This essay, published in Education Week's "Leading for Learning" report on charter school leadership, presents new national survey data about who charter school leaders are, why they take the jobs, where they struggle most, and what can help.
- Jun 2008
This paper outlines competing principles of charter school oversight and examines how those principles affect an authorizer’s approach to finding and selecting new schools, conducting day-to-day oversight of performance, and responding to the threat of school failure.
- Jun 2008
This paper considers systematic school reform efforts in Australia, New Zealand and England, where each government took steps to heighten accountability, decentralize governance and invest in schools’ capacity to improve performance.
- Apr 2008
What are the options for charter school authorizers or entities with similar responsibilities who want to preserve assets when closing low-performing schools? This study suggests that authorizers rarely try to salvage these assets.
- Dec 2007
Like previous editions of Hopes, Fears, & Reality, the 2007 edition explores some of the most challenging issues facing the charter school movement with a focus on the pressing concerns, tensions, and opportunities involved with teaching, leading, and governing charter schools.
- Jun 2007
This report reviews the available data to describe the current corps of charter school leaders: how they are prepared, how they experience their work, and the institutional strategies in place to sustain and transition leadership.
- May 2007
This brief begins with a look at the main problems faced by organizations attempting to replicate charter schools at scale, followed by a summary of lessons from the for-profit and nonprofit sectors about the process of replicating complex organizations.
- Mar 2007
Analyzing data from the 2003-04 Schools and Staffing Survey (SASS), this working paper finds that charter schools consistently reported significantly fewer issues with threats to persons or property and fewer behavioral problems than traditional public schools.
- Dec 2006
This chapter of Hopes, Fears, & Reality: A Balanced Look at American Charter Schools in 2006 reports the results of a new study that examines how city school districts that lose students and funding to charter schools can help their schools compete.
- Dec 2006
This chapter of Hopes, Fears, & Reality: A Balanced Look at American Charter Schools in 2006 presents the results of a meeting between charter school leaders and teachers union leaders to discuss areas of agreement and disagreement.
- Dec 2006
This chapter of Hopes, Fears, & Reality: A Balanced Look at American Charter Schools in 2006 shows how public officials, citizens, and the press can move beyond the preoccupation with test scores to begin assessing charter schools on the basis of their long-term consequences for children.
- Dec 2006
In this chapter of Hopes, Fears, & Reality: A Balanced Look at American Charter Schools in 2006, Mary Beth Celio contemplates the challenge of fairly measuring charter school graduation rates—an important, but rarely tracked metric of charter school success.
- Dec 2006
This brief summarizes which charter school data states collect and how the limitations of those data impact the quality of charter school research. The data in this brief were collected as part of the research for Hopes, Fears, & Reality: A Balanced Look at American Charter Schools in 2006
- Oct 2006
The National Charter School Research Project and the Progressive Policy Institute convened a meeting of local, state, and national leaders from both the charter school and teachers union communities to address ongoing battles between teachers unions and charter schools. This report summarizes this unusual meeting.
- Aug 2006
This report summarizes a meeting of leaders from charter management organizations, school districts, and foundations to address the question of charter expansion and provides concrete recommendations for those interested in creating a more hospitable environment for charter school growth in cities or nationwide.
- Feb 2006
Too many charter school authorizers aren't fulfilling their responsibilities in providing adequate oversight for charter schools. This white paper examines the causes and consequences of poor authorizing and proposes how the problem might be fixed.
- Jan 2006
This essay is part of a collection of essays published by The Urban Institute that assess the challenges facing New Orleans and recommend tested models for making the city's social infrastructure stronger and more equitable than it was before Katrina.
- Dec 2005
This chapter of Hopes, Fears, & Reality: A Balanced Look at American Charter Schools in 2005 provides overview data of American charter schools based on surveys of state agencies and state charter associations.
- Dec 2005
This chapter of Hopes, Fears, & Reality: A Balanced Look at American Charter Schools in 2005 provides a fresh perspective on the controversy over the academic performance of charter schools, concluding that the results of achievement research are not as clear as either side of the charter "dustup" would claim.
- Dec 2005
This chapter of Hopes, Fears, & Reality: A Balanced Look at American Charter Schools in 2005 extracts from California's experience of the sudden closure of California Charter Academy to suggest how charter authorizers and school districts can avoid catastrophic school failure and sudden mass transfers of students.
- Dec 2005
This chapter of Hopes, Fears, & Reality: A Balanced Look at American Charter Schools in 2005 considers how school districts and charter authorizers can make distinctions between charter schools that offer valuable options to students, and those that do not.
- Dec 2005
This chapter of Hopes, Fears, & Reality: A Balanced Look at American Charter Schools in 2005 pulls together some of the strands of this volume, looking at the increasing pressure charter schools face to produce student achievement.
- Nov 2004
This brief, published by NACSA, explores the reasons urban, suburban, and rural districts alike have embraced charter schools as an integral part of their overall strategy for school improvement, and offers suggestions for districts interested in pursuing the charter option.
- Nov 2003
The National Working Commission on Choice in K-12 Education, chaired by CRPE's Paul Hill, was established to explore how choice works and to examine how communities interested in the potential benefits of new school options could obtain them while avoiding choice's potential damage. This report, produced by the Brookings Institution, summarizes the findings from the Commission.
- Dec 2002
This Koret Task Force book, published by Hoover Institution Press, reviews the furious national debate over school choice, examining the benefits of choice for children, families, and schools-and showing how properly designed choice programs can prevent the harmful outcomes choice opponents fear.
- May 2002
This guide provides an overview of the school development process in three sections and includes an appendix of additional resources. It should be helpful for anyone starting a new school, whether it is a private school, a charter public school, or a district magnet school.
- Dec 2001
This report, prepared for the Annie E. Casey Foundation, describes why community schools are important, addresses the initial questions and concerns in creating community schools, explains promising approaches, and concludes with a list of resources to help organizations build more effective community schools.
- Jan 2000
This volume is the second in a trilogy of books designed to describe the politics of reform in urban school systems and clarify reform options available to mayors and other community leaders who want to improve school performance dramatically. It Takes a City develops lessons from the reform experiences in six American cities which have made concerted attempts to improve their public schools: Boston, Memphis, New York City District #2, San Antonio, San Francisco, and Seattle.
- Dec 1997
A heated debate is raging over our nation’s public schools and how they should be reformed, with proposals ranging from imposing national standards to replacing public education altogether with a voucher system for private schools. Combining decades of experience in education, this book, published by the University of Chicago Press, proposes an innovative approach to solving the problems of our school system and find a middle ground between these extremes.
- Dec 1997
This report was written in anticipation of the passage of House Bill 1834, a charter school statute considered and ultimately rejected by the Pennsylvania legislature in the fall of 1996. The information and advice contained herein has broader application to charter schools and the charter movement.
- Jun 1997
This report examines the "supply side" of education reform - the extent to which proposals to decentralize public education can be implemented by the individuals, groups, or institutions prepared to operate schools in the new system. Charter schools are the focus of this study, and particularly the early development of the system of schools permitted by the charter school statute that Massachusetts enacted in 1993.
- May 1997
This Report describes the mission, functions, capabilities and plans of a potential nonprofit Technical Assistance Activity (TAA) for charter school applicants under House Bill 1834, the Charter School Act previously under consideration by the Pennsylvania legislature. We have published the report to advance understanding of the Pennsylvania initiative and because the information and advice contained herein has broader application to charter schools and the charter movement.
- Dec 1996
In September of 1995, the Program on Reinventing Public Education invited twelve experts to Seattle for a workshop about the business side of charter school start-up. This report summarizes the strategies for charter school start-up recommended by the workshop participants.
- Jun 1996
In this article, Paul Hill argues that there is ample evidence that universal public school choice would strongly benefit all children, including the disadvantaged, by promoting candid and demanding relationships among teachers, parents, and students.
- Dec 1995
This article provides details about the charter school concept: its relationship to other well-known proposals for school reform, the essential characteristics of a charter school, and the approaches taken by states to implement the charter concept.