Wednesday, July 6, 2011

CREDO study finds Indiana charter schools superior to traditional public schools

In the spirit of Milton and Rose Friedman, Indiana recently expanded on its historic school voucher program by passing legislation linking teachers’ pay with student performance. But in the wake of these victories for school-choice, yet another example for Kentucky from neighboring Indiana has fallen under the radar.

CREDO, the group that brought you the methodologically flawed “Multiple Choice: Charter School Performance in 16 States,” recently released a follow-up report which focuses on charter schools in the state of Indiana.

Although sticking with the same quasi-experimental structure, CREDO finds that Indiana charter school students show significantly higher gains than their traditional public school counterparts in both reading and math. 98% of charter schools showed similar or superior academic growth in reading compared to traditional public schools, while a full 100% showed similar or superior growth in math.

Charter school detractors, such as KY Rep. Carl Rollins (D), may now think twice when using the dubious 2009 CREDO study as proof against charter school performance. If Rep. Collins wants assurance that charter schools “are really going to help us make progress,” he need only ask Dr. Margaret Raymond, Director of CREDO at Stanford University: “At a time where there is acute attention to quality in the charter sector, the charter schools in Indiana are proving to be a high quality option for students and parents.”

Click here for the full report on Indiana.

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