Measuring Up



South Carolina

Not scored

See a summary of the state’s charter law.

See additional observations about charters in the state.

What is the state of charter schools in South Carolina?

GROWTH INDICATORS

 

 

Score


1. Public school share
 (2014–15)

N/A

weight = 3 | Possible total = 12

Number

Percentage

 

Public charter schools

66

5%

 

 


2. Public school student share
 (2014–15)

N/A

weight = 3 | Possible total = 12

Number

Percentage

 

Public charter school students

27,191

4%

 

 

3. Students by race and ethnicity (2013–14)

N/A

weight = 2 | Possible total = 8

Charters

Traditional

Difference

White

65%

52%

13%

Black

26%

35%

-9%

Hispanic

5%

8%

-3%

Asian

1%

1%

0%

Other

3%

4%

-1%

Total minority

35%

48%

-13%

 

4. Students in special populations (2013–14)

N/A

weight = 2 | Possible total = 8

Charters

Traditional

Difference

Free and reduced-price lunch status

42%

58%

-16%

Special education status

N/A

N/A

N/A

English learner status

N/A

N/A

N/A

Total special student populations

42%

58%

-16%

 

5. Schools by geographic distribution (2012–13)

N/A

weight = 2 | Possible total = 8

Charters

Traditional

Difference

City

33%

17%

16%

Suburb

36%

28%

8%

Town

10%

14%

-4%

Rural

21%

41%

-20%

Total nonsuburban

64%

72%

-8%

 

6. Communities with more than 10 percent of students in public charter schools (2014–15)

N/A

weight = 1 | Possible total = 4

 

 

 

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

0

   
 

7. New public charter schools opened over the past five years  (2010–15)

N/A

weight = 3 | Possible total = 12

 

 

 

2010–11

8

Average Annual Open Rate

10.9%

2011–12

3

2012–13

8

2013–14

7

2014–15

10

Total number

36

 

 

 

8. Public charter schools closed over the past five years (2009–14)

N/A

weight = 3 | Possible total = 12

 

 

 

2009–10

2

Average Annual Closure Rate

2.7%

2010–11

0

2011–12

0

2012–13

3

2013–14

3

Total number

8

 

 

 
 

INNOVATION INDICATORS

 

 

Score

9. Percentage of charter schools with an identified special focus (2012–13)

N/A

weight = 2 | Possible total = 8

 

 

 

No Excuses

0%

Total

41%

STEM

4%

Arts

2%

Classical

0%

Purposely diverse

0%

Single sex

6%

International/Foreign language

2%

Montessori/Waldorf

29%

Dropout/Expulsion recovery

4%

Military

0%

Vocational training

2%

Public policy/Citizenship

2%

 

QUALITY INDICATORS

 

 

Score

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

N/A

weight = 3 | Possible total = 12

 

 

 

Number of additional days of learning in reading

 

 

 

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

N/A

weight = 3 | Possible total = 12

 

 

 

Number of additional days of learning in math

 

 

 

12. Percentage point change in top categories in state accountability system (2012–14)

N/A

weight = 3 | Possible total = 12

 2012-13

2013-14

Difference

A

50%

40%

-10%

B

6%

13%

7%

Total

56%

53%

-3%

 

13. Percentage point change in bottom categories in state accountability system (2012–14)

N/A

weight = 3 | Possible total = 12

 2012-13

2013-14

Difference

D

6%

15%

9%

1

26%

23%

-3%

Total

32%

38%

6%

 

Items Reported But Not Scored

Startups versus conversions (2014–15)

 

Startups

Conversions

 

 

Percentage of a state’s public charter schools

95%

5%

 

 

 

Charter authorizers (2014–15)

 

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

16

35

2

53%

State education agency

Independent charter board

1

31

31

47%

Noneducational government entity

Higher education institution

Nonprofit

 

Virtual public charter schools and students (2013–14)

Number of virtual public charter school students

7,841

 

 

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

34%

 

 

Number of virtual public charter schools

6

 

 

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

10%

 

 

 

Health of the Movement Summary

South Carolina enacted its charter public school law in 1996. In our most recent rankings of state charter school laws, it ranked #13 out of 43. The law does not cap charter school growth, gives a fair amount of autonomy and accountability to charter schools, and provides multiple authorizing options to charter applicants. However, it provides inequitable funding to charters.

A state’s charter public school movement had to meet three conditions to be scored and ranked in this year’s report. First, the movement had to serve at least 2 percent of the state’s public school students. Second, the state had to participate in CREDO’s National Charter School Study 2013 so that we had a measure of student academic growth data for its charter public schools in comparison with its traditional public schools. Third, the state had to have a state accountability system in place that categorized all public schools on the basis of performance in 2012-13 and 2013-14. South Carolina’s movement did not meet at least one of these conditions, so we did not score and rank it in this year’s report.

However, below we provide the data we were able to gather. Based on this information, we offer the following observations:

  • In 2014-15, there were 66 charter public schools and 27,191 charter public school students in South Carolina, constituting 5 percent of the state’s public schools and 4 percent of the state’s public school students, respectively.
  • In 2013-14, charter public schools in South Carolina served a lower percentage of racial and ethnic minority students (13 percentage points less) and a lower percentage of free and reduced-price lunch students (16 percentage points less) than traditional public schools.
  • During 2012-13, 63 percent of the state’s public charters were located in nonsuburban areas as compared with 72 percent of traditional public schools.
  • Between 2010-11 and 2014-15, 36 new charter public schools opened in South Carolina, an average annual open rate of 10.9 percent.
  • Between 2009-10 and 2013-14, eight charter public schools closed in South Carolina, an average annual closure rate of 2.7 percent.
  • In 2012-13, 41 percent of the state’s charter public schools were special-focus schools.
  • Between 2012-13 and 2013-14, the percentage of charter public schools performing in the top two categories of the state’s accountability system decreased by 3 percentage points (from 56 percent to 53 percent).
  • Between 2012-13 and 2013-14, the percentage of charter public schools performing in the bottom two categories of the state’s accountability system increased by 6 percentage points (from 32 percent to 38 percent).
  • In 2014-15, 95 percent of the state’s charter public schools were start-ups and 5 percent were conversions.
  • As of 2014-15, 16 local school districts had authorized 35 charter public schools (53 percent of the state’s total number of charter public schools) and one independent state charter board had authorized 31 charter public schools (47 percent).
  • During 2013-14, six full-time virtual charter public schools operated in South Carolina, serving 7,841 students (34 percent of the state’s charter public school population).