How Charter Schools Served Students During COVID-19 Closures

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Almost immediately after schools closed due to the coronavirus outbreak in spring 2020, we began to see anecdotal evidence that charter schools were reacting quickly and serving students well. 

This paper offers evidence that smaller networks and schools that represent over 65% of the charter school landscape were able to respond quickly and take advantage of the freedom and flexibility that are built into the charter school model to respond to families. Vignettes in this report highlight some of the charter school leaders who exemplify the very best of resourcefulness.

These profiles of a geographically and racially diverse group of schools include stories from communities in New York and Washington state that were at the epicenter of COVID-19 infection, as well as schools in other communities that were affected differently.

Before the coronavirus struck, public charter schools were already innovative, finding better ways to serve students who have traditionally been underserved—and delivering exceptional results. In the months and years ahead, we will learn more about how public schools responded to closures during the pandemic and what should be done in the future to better serve students who were all impacted in some way.

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