Measuring Up



Georgia

TOTAL SCORE:
47 out of 116

Rank: 18 out of 26

See a summary of the state’s charter law.

See additional observations about charters in the state and recommendations to support the growth of high-quality charter schools.

What is the state of charter schools in Georgia?

GROWTH INDICATORS

 

 

Score


1. Public school share
 (2013–14)

3

weight = 3 | Possible total = 12

Number

Percentage

 

Public charter schools

110

5%

 

 


2. Public school student share
 (2013–14)

3

weight = 3 | Possible total = 12

Number

Percentage

 

Public charter school students

70,718

4%

 

 

3. Students by race and ethnicity (2012–13)

4

weight = 2 | Possible total = 8

Charters

Traditional

Difference

White

44%

44%

0%

Black

38%

37%

1%

Hispanic

12%

13%

-1%

Asian

4%

3%

1%

Other

3%

3%

0%

Total minority

57%

56%

1%

 

4. Students in special populations (2012–13)

2

weight = 2 | Possible total = 8

Charters

Traditional

Difference

Free and reduced-price lunch status

51%

60%

-9%

Special education status

N/A

N/A

N/A

English learner status

N/A

N/A

N/A

Total special student populations

51%

60%

-9%

 

5. Schools by geographic distribution (2011–12)

4

weight = 2 | Possible total = 8

Charters

Traditional

Difference

City

41%

17%

24%

Suburb

35%

31%

4%

Town

3%

12%

-9%

Rural

21%

41%

-20%

Total nonsuburban

65%

69%

-4%

 

6. Communities with more than 10 percent of students in public charter schools (2012–13)

1

weight = 1 | Possible total = 4

 

 

 

Number of communities with more than 10 percent of students in public charter schools

3

   
 

7. New public charter schools opened over the past five years  (2009–14)

12

weight = 3 | Possible total = 12

 

 

 

2009–10

11

Average Annual Open Rate

13%

2010–11

19

2011–12

20

2012–13

7

2013–14

10

Total number

67

 

 

 

 

8. Public charter schools closed over the past five years (2008–13)

6

weight = 3 | Possible total = 12

 

 

 

2008–09

4

Average Annual Closure Rate

7.6%

2009–10

7

2010–11

8

2011–12

10

2012–13

8

Total number

37

 

 

 

 
 

INNOVATION INDICATORS

 

 

Score

9. Public charter schools reporting use of various innovative practices (2011–12)

4

weight = 2 | Possible total = 8

 

 

 

Extended day (30 minutes or more each day compared to traditional public schools)

59

Average

25%

Extended year (10 or more days compared to traditional public schools)

18

Year-round calendar

0

Independent study

18

School-to-work

27

Higher education courses

27

 
 

QUALITY INDICATORS

 

 

Score

10. Additional days of learning in reading (2007–11)

8

weight = 4 | Possible total = 16

 

 

 

Number of additional days of learning in reading

14

 

 

 

 

11. Additional days of learning in math (2007–11)

0

weight = 4 | Possible total = 16

 

 

 

Number of additional days of learning in math

-14

 

 

 

Items Reported But Not Scored

Startups versus conversions (2012–13)

 

Startups

Conversions

 

 

Percentage of a state’s public charter schools

72%

28%

 

 

 

Public charter schools that are independent, associated with a CMO, or associated with an EMO (2010–11)

 

Number

Percentage

 

 

Independent

84

85%

 

 

Charter management organization

4

4%

 

 

Education management organization

11

11%

 

 

 

Charter authorizers (2013–14)

 

Number of authorizers

Number of charter schools

Average number of charters per authorizer

Percentage of the state’s public charters authorized by this type of authorizer

Local education agency

34

94

3

86%

State education agency

-

-

-

-

Independent charter board

1

15

15

14%

Noneducational government entity

-

-

-

-

Higher education institution

-

-

-

-

Nonprofit

-

-

-

-

 

Virtual public charter schools and students (2012–13)

Number of virtual public charter school students

13,412

 

 

Percentage of a state’s public charter school student population enrolled
in virtual charter schools

25%

 

 

Number of virtual public charter schools

3

 

 

Percentage of a state’s public charter schools that are virtual charter schools

3%

 

 

 

Health of the Movement Summary

Georgia’s public charter school movement ranked #18 out of 26, scoring 47 points out of 116.

Georgia scored relatively well on the following indicator:

  • Sixty-seven public charters opened in Georgia between 2009–10 and 2013–14, a 13 percent average annual open rate.

Georgia scored relatively low on the following indicators:

  • Only 5 percent of the state’s public schools were charters in 2013–14.
  • Only 4 percent of the state’s public school students were charter students in 2013–14.
  • Public charter schools in Georgia served a lower percentage of free and reduced-price lunch students when compared with traditional public schools during 2012–13 (9 percentage points less).
  • Only three communities in Georgia had more than 10 percent of their public school students in charters during 2012–13.
  • On average, public charter school students exhibited lower academic growth in math when compared with traditional public school students between 2007–08 and 2010–11 (14 fewer days).

In addition to the above points, we also offer the following observations about the movement in Georgia:

  • Public charter schools in Georgia served a higher percentage of racial and ethnic minority students when compared with traditional public schools during 2012–13 (1 percentage point more).
  • Sixty-five percent of the state’s public charters were located in nonsuburban areas during 2011–12 as compared to 69 percent of traditional public schools.
  • Thirty-seven public charter schools closed in Georgia between 2008–09 and 2012–13, a 7.6 percent average annual closure rate.
  • An average of 25 percent of the state’s public charter schools reported using one of the six innovative practices that we tracked in 2011–12.
  • On average, public charter school students exhibited higher academic growth in reading when compared with traditional public school students between 2007–08 and 2010–11 (14 more days).
  • Seventy-two percent of the state’s public charters were startups, and 28 percent were conversions in 2012–13.
  • In 2010–11, 85 percent of the public charter schools in Georgia were independently managed, 4 percent were associated with a nonprofit charter management organization, and 11 percent were associated with a for-profit educational management organization.
  • As of 2013–14, 34 local school boards had authorized 94 public charter schools (86 percent of the state’s total number of public charters), and the Georgia Charter Schools Commission had authorized 15 public charter schools (14 percent).
  • There were three virtual public charter schools in Georgia in 2012–13, serving 13,412 students (25 percent of the state’s public charter school population).

Recommendations

Georgia has small populations of public charter schools and public charter school students. Such students, on average, are performing better than their peers in traditional public schools in reading but not math, although it is important to note that the most recent student academic growth data available are from 2010–11. To better support the growth of high-quality public charter schools, we recommend that the state change its law to increase operational autonomy, strengthen accountability, and enhance its funding and facilities support to charters. We also encourage the state to explore why public charter schools are serving a lower percentage of free and reduced-price lunch students than traditional public schools.