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  • Writer's pictureJoanne Jacobs

More money or more charter schools?

“Letting great educators open up schools is much more cost effective than increasing spending by billions of dollars,” argues Neerav Kingsland in More Money or More Charter Schools? in Education Next.

Money probably does matter in education, argue Kevin Carey and Elizabeth A. Harris in the New York Times.

They cite a recent study estimating that spending 10 percent more on schools increases test scores by .018 standard deviations.

Charter students gain four times that much, according to CREDO’s urban charter school study, Kingsland writes.

A second study found that a 10 percent increase in funding led to higher adult wages and less poverty for low-income students.

A Florida study found low-income charter school students saw a nearly identical rise in adult wages, writes Kingsland.

Urban charter schools achieve these results at a small fraction of the cost” of increasing school spending, he concludes.

Massachusetts charter public schools outperform the school districts from which their students come, according to a Pioneer Institute study. Charters’ attrition rates are lower than or equal to the sending districts.

“Charters are now educating nearly the same percentage of English language learners (ELLs) and special education students as the sending districts,” said Dr. Cara Stillings Candal.

Massachusetts charters don’t drain money from traditional public school districts, the Pioneer study concluded.

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