Ch. 6 - Missed Opportunity: Improving Charter School Governing Boards (HFR '09)

January 2010

In this chapter, Christine Campbell explores an underutilized opportunity for strengthening charter schools: addressing the quality of charter school governing boards. Too often, charter boards suffer from the same challenges as their public school brethren, reports Campbell. They tend to be either too disengaged or too meddlesome. What is required is neither a meddlesome nor a rubber-stamp board, but rather a steward of the school’s values. She concludes by urging expanded recruitment and training for charter board members, along with authorizers who pay more attention to board functioning. In the search to scale-up high-performing schools, improving the quality of governing boards may be a high-leverage investment opportunity for funders and policymakers.