Testifying before Congress yesterday Eva Moscowitz laid out the case for making her schools a national model for reducing the learning gaps correlated with race and poverty.
“Success Academy schools are at the top of all public schools in the state.
For the past five years, our scholars have consistently ranked in the top 10 percent of all the state’s schools. On last year’s test, our scholars outscored New York City students by 52 percentage points in math and 32 points in English Language Arts, or ELA.
Nearly all the SA scholars tested are children of color, and they dramatically outperformed their peers across the state: 82 percent passed math and 58 percent passed ELA exams.
Statewide, just 15 percent of African-American students and 18 percent of Hispanic students passed the math test; 16 percent of African-American students and 17 percent of Hispanic students passed the ELA exam.”
Charter schools can’t do it alone, and not all school districts need charters to turn the corner. But in scores of urban districts such as Baltimore, St. Louis and L.A. there’s little hope of turning any corners without high performing charters playing a role. In cities such as D.C. and New York, charters those charters are emerging as parallel districts. In cities such as Denver and Houston, top charters have formed compacts with the districts. Both approaches work.
What doesn’t work, however, are the attacks on charters as plots to “privatize” public education. As seen in a recent vote in Massachusetts, fighting to stave off top charters amounts to putting the interests of adults over kids.