One of the biggest challenges to learning about what works in education is finding reasonably well done research. I’ve commented on that before, and many other people, such as Arthur Levine, past president of Columbia Teachers College (one of the oldest and best known teacher training schools in the country),agree.
Nowhere has there been more of a smokescreen about what really works in education than for charter school performance.
Now, researcher Jay Greene has assembled a list of quality research reports on charters that do acceptable “apples to apples” comparisons with regular public school performance. Greene’s studies focus on those schools where admissions have been randomly controlled in ways that provide fair comparisons to the schools those students would otherwise have attended.
Find Greene’s list of reports here.
These reports indicate that charters are making a positive difference in test scores and graduation rates. You just have to sift out all the unscientific (dare I say biased, apples to lemons) reports to learn this.