Charter Schools

Paralysis (of progress) by analysis (of what we already know)

Parents in Missouri who want to choose a high-quality school for their children, regardless of where they live, were dealt yet another potential setback last week. The Chairman of the House Elementary and Secondary Education Committee introduced House bill 2531, which proposes a 17-member Charter School Task Force to study charter schools, with a December 31, 2019 deadline to present their findings.

On Charter Schools, Let Families—not Politicians—Decide

This year marks 20 years since Missouri enacted the law that allowed charter schools to open in St. Louis and Kansas City. Currently enrolling 22,000 students, charter schools have given much-needed options to families in these districts that have struggled historically. Unfortunately, families in the rest of Missouri are denied the same opportunity to send their children to schools that better fit their needs

2018 Blueprint: Charter School Expansion

THE PROBLEM: Demand for charter schools in Missouri is at an all-time high. Unfortunately, for practical purposes charter schools are limited to the Kansas City and Saint Louis School Districts. Establishing a charter school is nearly impossible in any district that meets minimum state accreditation requirements. Tens of thousands of students are denied the opportunity for a better education.

THE SOLUTION: Expand charter schools statewide.

Charter Schools’ Accountability Is Their Strength

The Nirvana fallacy often gets in the way of policymaking when, as Voltaire described, we let the perfect become the enemy of the good. It is easy to fall into this trap when discussing education because we want every child to have a world-class education. In Kansas City, however, this fallacy has led us to rejecting the good that charter schools can offer in exchange for empty platitudes about accountability, strategic plans, and prioritizing the children.

Charter Schools Boost College Completion

I graduated from high school in 1999. Since then, I have had few interactions with anyone who works for my alma mater, and none in any formal capacity. No one called a year later to see if I went to college. No one checked to see if they could offer me any career support. I didn’t expect them to. They had done their job. I had graduated high school, and that was that. I suspect this is the case for most high school graduates.  

Expanding Charter Schooling in Missouri

Charter school expansion is just one of several school choice initiatives lawmakers in Jefferson City have proposed this legislative session. The first charter schools opened in Kansas City and Saint Louis in 1999, but many Missourians still have questions and concerns about charter schools and the quality of education they offer. A new Show-Me Institute essay addresses many of these questions by examining studies on charter school performance in Missouri. In addition, the essay describes barriers that are preventing charter schools from serving more children throughout the state.