Charter school expansion increases educational inequality

In a new Economic Policy Institute report, Rutgers University professor Bruce Baker finds that charter school expansion has exacerbated inequities in education.

 

“This report highlights patterns of charter school expansion across several large and mid-size U.S. cities since 2000. In this report, the focus is the loss of enrollments and revenues to charter schools in host districts and the response of districts as seen through patterns of overhead expenditures,” Baker stated.

In his study of 11 city school systems, Baker finds, in most cases, the non-charter public schools have received fewer resources due to charter school expansion. Also, he finds that many leading charter operators have been charged with conflicts-of-interest and financial malfeasance.

“I begin by identifying those cities and local public school districts that have experienced the largest shifts of students from district-operated to charter schools, and select from among those cities illustrative examples of the effects of charter school expansion on host district finances and enrollments.”

Baker recommends communities hold charter operators publicly accountable and consider the cost and benefits to the community and to the greater public good.

Source: EPI