U.S. Department of Education: Promoting Educational Excellence for all Americans

A r c h i v e d  I n f o r m a t i o n

Public Charter Schools Program

Goal 8: To support the creation of a large number of high-quality charter schools and to evaluate their effects.
Objective 1 of 2: ENCOURAGE THE DEVELOPMENT OF A LARGE NUMBER OF HIGH-QUALITY CHARTER SCHOOLS THAT ARE FREE FROM STATE OR LOCAL RULES THAT INHIBIT FLEXIBLE OPERATION, ARE HELD ACCOUNTABLE FOR ENABLING STUDENTS TO REACH CHALLENGING STATE PERFORMANCE STANDARDS, AND ARE OPEN TO ALL STUDENTS.
Indicator 8.1.1 of 3: State legislation: By 2000, 40 states will have charter school legislation.
Targets and Performance Data Assessment of Progress Sources and Data Quality
Number of states with charter school legislation (including the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico)
Year Actual Performance Performance Targets
1995
12
 
1996
19
 
1997
27
 
1998
31
 
1999
38
 
2000
38
40
2001
39
42
2002
 
42
Status: Positive movement toward target.

Explanation: Positive even with gain of only one state between 1999 and 2001. Several States will be considering legislation this year.  
Additional Source Information: State Educational Agencies (SEA); state legislatures.

Frequency: Annually.
Collection Period: 2002.
Data Available: January 2003.
Validated By: On-Site Monitoring By ED.

Limitations: There is variation in the definition of state charter school legislation.

 
Indicator 8.1.2 of 3: Charter operations: By 2002, there will be at least 3,000 charter schools in operation around the Nation.
Targets and Performance Data Assessment of Progress Sources and Data Quality
Number of charter schools in operation
Year Actual Performance Performance Targets
1995
100
 
1996
255
 
1997
428
 
1998
790
 
1999
1,100
 
2000
1,700
2,060
2001
2,110
2,667
2002
2,431
3,000
2003
 
3,000
Status: Positive movement toward target.

Explanation: There has been a positive trend toward meeting this objective. The number of charter schools in operation has dramatically increased from 100 in 1994 to 2,431 in 2001.
Additional Source Information: SEAs; State legislatures.

Frequency: Annually.
Collection Period: 2002.
Data Available: January 2003.
Validated By: On-Site Monitoring By ED.

Limitations: Differences in the definition of charter schools (i.e., some states count multiple sites as single charters, while others count them as multiple charters) cause variability in the counts SEAs. There is sometimes disagreement about numbers of charter schools in operation among the agencies that do the counting.

 
Indicator 8.1.3 of 3: The percentage of charter schools reporting that the lack of start-up funds is a major obstacle to implementation will decrease.
Targets and Performance Data Assessment of Progress Sources and Data Quality
Percentage of first-year charter schools reporting start-up funding as a major obstacle to implementation
Year Actual Performance Performance Targets
1996
59
 
1997
55
 
1998
51
 
1999
39
 
2000
28
 
2001
 
30
2002
 
30
Status: No current data but progress toward target is likely. No 2000 data, but progress toward target is likely.

Explanation: Because funding to the Public Charter Schools Program has increased, the trend shown by earlier data is expected to continue.  
Source: Other
Other: National Evaluation.
Sponsor: Public Charter School Program.

Frequency: Monthly.
Validated By: Experienced Public/Private Entity.

Limitations: There are continuity problems as a result of data collection under multiple studies. In fact, the survey that is responsible for school-level data in 1999--2000, the Schools and Staffing Survey, did not capture this data. Therefore, there will be no data for this indicator until December 2001. After the National Evaluation is completed in 2002, it will be difficult to collect this data.

 

Objective 2 of 2: IDENTIFY, EVALUATE, AND DISSEMINATE THE EFFECTS OF CHARTER SCHOOLS.
Indicator 8.2.1 of 2: Equity--impact of charters on educational opportunity: Nationally, students in charter schools will have similar demographic characteristics as students in all public schools.
Targets and Performance Data Assessment of Progress Sources and Data Quality
Percentage of students, out of total student enrollment, for each demographic characteristic for both charter schools and all public schools in states with charter schools that year - Percent Minority
Year Actual Performance Performance Targets
 
Charter All Public
Charter All Public
1997
48.20 41.30
   
1998
51.80 41
   
2000
53 41
   

Percentage of students, out of total student enrollment, for each demographic characteristic for both charter schools and all public schools in states with charter schools that year - Free or Reduced-price Lunch Eligibility
Year Actual Performance Performance Targets
 
Charter All Public
Charter All Public
1997
36.70 37.60
   
1998
38.70 37.30
   
2000
   
37.30 37.30

Percentage of students, out of total student enrollment, for each demographic characteristic for both charter schools and all public schools in states with charter schools that year - Students With Disabilities
Year Actual Performance Performance Targets
 
Charter All Public
Charter All Public
1997
8.30 11.20
   
1998
8.40 11.30
   
2000
12 13
Status: Unable to judge.

Explanation: The target is to have the percentage of charter school students (with one of the three characteristics) similar to that of students in all public schools. It is difficult to judge whether this target will be met, because the percentage of minority students in charter schools, students eligible for free or reduced-price lunch, and students with disabilities is variable and seems to be affected by the growth of charter schools within states.  
Additional Source Information: Schools and Staffing Survey (1999); Evaluation of the Public Charter Schools Program (2001, and 2002).

Frequency: Other.
Collection Period: 2002.
Data Available: January 2003.
Validated By: On-Site Monitoring By ED.

Limitations: The number of charter schools, students in charters, and states with charter schools increase each year.

 
Indicator 8.2.2 of 2: Impact on student performance: Increasing numbers of charter schools will show improved student outcomes.
Targets and Performance Data Assessment of Progress Sources and Data Quality
- No Targets And Performance Data -
Status: Unable to judge.

Explanation: The first national-level study on student achievement in charter schools will be released in 2001.  
Source: Other Survey/Research

Additional Source Information: National Study of Charter Schools (2000).

Frequency: Monthly.
Collection Period: 2002.
Data Available: January 2003.
Validated By: No Formal Verification.

Limitations: 2001 data is for only 45 schools. At this point there is no universal source for this data.

 

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