California charters are high (and low) scoring

California charter schools are more likely to be top — and bottom — performers in state rankings, concludes a Portrait of the Movement released by the California Charter Schools Association.

The report finds a “U-shaped” distribution for charter schools, meaning they were more likely both to exceed their predicted performance compared with non-charters, based on student background, and — to a lesser extent — under-perform. It concludes that 14.7 percent of charters were in the top 5 percent of California schools, well above the 4 percent of non-charters in that category. But 12.7 percent of charters showed up in the bottom 5 percent of performance, compared to just 4.2 percent of non-charters.

Because successful schools enroll more students, California charter students are twice as likely to attend a high-performing charter as a low-performing charter.

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