Washington, D.C. Todd Ziebarth, senior vice president of state advocacy and support at the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools,released the following statement on a class-action lawsuit filed Tuesday that seeks to lift the state's caps on the number of public charter schools in Massachusetts:
"Among the 21 states that impose artificial caps on public charter school growth, Massachusetts has the most restrictive ones in the country. It is therefore not surprising that frustrated parents desperate for high-quality schools for their children have filed a lawsuit asking for the caps to be removed.
"In several school districts in the state, including Boston, charters have already reached their artificial limits which means no new public charter schools can open. These restrictions directly affect students access to the strong academic programs in public charter schools and leads to growing wait lists. In Boston, for example,there are 25,700 students on wait lists -nearly three times more names on wait lists than there are public charter school students in the city(see report here).Nationwide, there are over one million names on charter school wait lists.
"We urge policymakers to meet the growing demand of parents by enacting legislation that removes all caps on the growth of high-quality public charter school options."
About Public Charter Schools
Public charter schools are independent, public, and tuition-free schools that are given the freedom to be more innovative while being held accountable for advancing student achievement. Since 2010, manyresearch studieshavefound that students in charter schools do better in school than their traditional school peers. For example, one study by the Center for Research on Education Outcomes at Stanford University found that charter schools do a better job teaching low income students, minority students, and students who are still learning English than traditional schools. Separate studies by the Center on Reinventing Public Education and Mathematica Policy Research have found that charter school students are more likely to graduate from high school, go on to college, stay in college and have higher earnings in early adulthood.
About the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools
The National Alliance for Public Charter Schools is the leading national nonprofit organization committed to advancing the public charter school movement. Our mission is to lead public education to unprecedented levels of academic achievement by fostering a strong charter sector. For more information, please visit www.publiccharters.org.