Charter Schools outperforming traditional schools in New Orleans


In April, MHPC released a Maine View report outlining how the introduction of Charter Schools might be a way to improve school performance in Maine, which is one of only ten states in the nation that outlaws such schools. Seems as though the success of the charter school model is overwhelming in New Orleans:
Charter schools lead way on LEAP
Some improve in every grade; Recovery District campuses lag
Wednesday, August 01, 2007
By Darran Simon
New Orleans Times-Picayune
At Sophie B. Wright, one of many New Orleans charter schools that outperformed most traditional public schools on this year’s LEAP test, the faculty makes academic achievement a daily competition.
In scores released this week, charter schools such as Wright posted higher scores at every grade level, with some showing vast improvement over their pre-Katrina, pre-charter performance under the Orleans Parish School Board.
At Wright, a Recovery District charter school, children on the honor roll get T-shirts with their names embroidered on the back, a color signifying each marking period. Teachers get a monetary bonus when their students perform well on the state’s high-stakes assessment test.
Students at the school, once one of the system’s lowest-performing campuses, posted far better results this year, with 71 percent of fourth-graders scoring “basic” or higher on the English portion and 80 percent meeting that standard in math. Though eighth-graders didn’t do as well, they scored far better than past eighth-grade classes there.
In the first test scores offering a meaningful comparison between charter and traditional public schools in New Orleans, charters clustered near the top of the rankings, while traditional schools — particularly those run by the state-run Recovery School District — in some cases had more than half their students fail the test. At many Recovery District schools, fewer than 20 percent of students scored basic or above.
Read the entire article here