The best alternative to public schools? Nonprofit public charter schools

Not all school choices are equal.

Policymakers are considering vouchers and other ways to encourage alternatives to traditional public schools.

They should note research that shows that the best performing non-traditional schools look like traditional public schools. These charter schools are “nonprofit public schools, open to all and accountable to public authorities,” according to Kevin Carey at New America Foundation, citing Brookings Institution research.

By contrast, many for-profit charter schools have failed to beat public school results or have folded.

According to the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools, two-thirds of all charter schools are non-profit, single-site schools; 20 percent are run by non-profit charter school networks (such as KIPP Foundation) and just under 13 percent are run by for-profit companies.

Photo credit: KIPP Metro Atlanta

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