“Those Who Can, Do. Those Who Can’t, Close”
Here’s a good way to make a positive out of a negative. The Missouri State Board of Education has decided to close down the Can! Academies of St. Louis, a charter school that began operations this year.
The Can! Academy never really succeeded. Beginning with 440 students (mostly former high school dropouts), it dropped to only 118 by the end of its first year of operation. Administrators decided that the school wasn’t meeting its performance obligations and the decision was made to suspend operations.
The positive, however, is that this is a perfect example of educational choice at work. If Can! were a traditional public school, it would continue to operate regardless of how bad things got. But that’s the beauty of choice. If a school doesn’t work, then it’s discontinued. Competition among schools helps to ensure that only schools that are actually succeeding continue to operate.
In other words, at least the Can! students aren’t forced to remain in a failing school.