CREDO: NYC charters do better

New York City’s charter schools show “significantly better results for their students in reading and in math than their traditional public school counterparts,” concludes a new study by the Center for Research on Education Outcomes (CREDO) at Stanford University.  Charter schools do well for students overall, for blacks and Hispanics in both reading and math, for students who had not previously done well in traditional public schools, for students in poverty in reading, for students enrolled for at least two years or more in reading, and for all students in math regardless of how long they were enrolled, concluded Macke Raymond.

Raymond also authored a national charter school study showing mixed results for charter students in 16 states, setting off a dispute with Caroline Hoxby, also a Stanford researcher, who found better results for charter students in New York City. It will be interesting to see if this settles the conflict. Certainly, it’s not impossible that New York City has more high-quality charter schools than elsewhere.

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  1. CarolineSF says:

    How odd that the link when I click “significantly better results” in your original post actually goes to CREDO’s study of nationwide charter schools, which showed that charter schools overall perform significantly less well than public schools (which, BTW, is not “mixed”). It’s also interesting that CREDO’s PR/outreach is now being done by Larson COmmunications, which is a PR/lobbying firm that specifically represents charter schools, run by longtime charter world insider Gary Larson. That’s all rather strange.

  2. CREDO hasn’t put up the link to the new study yet. They sent me a press release with a Jan. 1 release date, so I figured I’d use it.

    CREDO’s earlier study of 16 states found some charters (all of which are public) performed better, some the same and some worse than district-run schools. The new study shows a significant advantage for charter schools in New York City.

    I see nothing odd in hiring a PR firm that specializes in educational PR.

  3. There’s nothing wrong with CREDO’s hiring Larson Communications. It surprised me, though, because Larson doesn’t just specialize in “educational PR” — it specializes specifically in promoting and lobbying for charter schools.

    I was surprised to learn that because I hadn’t been aware that CREDO was so closely linked with the charter industry, nor that it was part of the Hoover Institution as opposed to Stanford itself, a point that seems to have been downplayed in the PR for the June study. I definitely give CREDO credit for integrity in not weaseling out on that study (the way Education Sector just did with its unrelated report on charters, for example) and instead honestly releasing the results.

    The announcement about the new study surprised me because of the very weird Jan. 1 release date and the fact that the link goes to CREDO’s studying discrediting charter schools. Normally the practice would be not to include a link until you had material related to the study to link to, or at least just to a generic page about CREDO.

    It may mean nothing, but it just seems so strange that CREDO’s new study basically replicates the one that Caroline Hoxby just did — studying the same thing with the same results, and released only a few weeks ago — and all this even as CREDO was engaged in a heated back-and-forth with Hoxby over Hoxby’s effort to rebut the CREDO study that discredited charter schools.

    (And sorry, but CREDO’s June 2009 study showed that far more charter schools perform worse than public school than perform better than public schools — it’s also weaseling to call that “mixed.”)


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