NCPA - National Center for Policy Analysis

Charter Schools Offer Minority Students Better Educational Options

February 20, 2015

With February being black history month, the NCPA is reflecting on the many government policies, from the minimum wage to housing laws to licensing restrictions, that have negative impacts Americans, especially on the black community.

For example, consider education. Charter schools are typically found in urban areas and offer parents educational options where previously they may have had none. Despite some attempts by liberal policymakers (such as the New York City mayor) to defund charter schools, parents whose children attend them overwhelmingly support them.

  • According to the Center for Education Reform (as reported in an NCPA publication here) charter schools are smaller than conventional public schools and serve a disproportionate and increasing number of poor and minority students.
  • Charter school students are more likely to be proficient in reading and math than students in neighboring conventional schools, achieving the greatest gains among African-American, Hispanic and low-income students.


In fact, Reason.com has reported not only on the diversity of charter schools (charters are 28.7 percent black, 28 percent Hispanic and 35.6 percent white, while traditional public schools are 52.4 percent white) but on the real academic gains that minority children from low-income families receive from attending charters. For example, blacks from low-income families attending charter schools receive the equivalent of an additional 7.5 weeks of math instruction and 6.5 weeks of reading instruction.

Source: NCPA Staff, "Reflections During Black History Month: What Public Policies Are Hurting African-Americans?" National Center for Policy Analysis, February 2015. 

 

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