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Indiana Charter Schools Receive High Ranking

The Hoosier State is one of only five states whose charter students perform better in both reading and math than their traditional public school counterparts.

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Photo: Ben Skirvin/WFIU

Indiana Charter Schools Receive High Ranking

Stanford University researchers say a new study released Wednesday indicates Indiana charter schools are performing far better than most charter schools nationwide.

Stanford’s Center for Research on Education Outcomes, or CREDO, has conducted 20 state-specific studies on charter schools, and Indiana’s charter schools rank behind only New York City in effectiveness. The Hoosier State is one of only five states whose charter students perform better in both reading and math than their traditional public school counterparts. CREDO Director Dr. Margaret Raymond said the results are particularly good news for African-American students.

“The learning gains of blacks in charter schools are larger than the blacks’ learning gains in traditional public schools. And that difference in reading is statistically significant and in math it’s statistically significant and exceptionally noteworthy,” said Raymond.

But African-American students still learn at a slower rate than their white counterparts in both charter and public schools. Hispanic students, on the other hand, are learning at a faster rate than white students in both charter and public schools, and in charters schools, they are closing the gap even more quickly.

Dr. Howard said Indiana’s tight control over how schools are chartered and how performance is tracked is a major factor in the positive outcomes. She added that allowing broader authority to charter schools, which some say will happen with a bill currently in the General Assembly, could lead to worse results.

Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Bennett released a statement Wednesday morning praising the CREDO study.

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