NCPA - National Center for Policy Analysis

Charter Schools Receive High Marks in New York

June 11, 2003

Parents in New York are extremely satisfied with the work charter schools are doing in almost every aspect of schooling, according to a new report by the Manhattan Institute.

Their assessments are particularly striking when asked to compare the charter to the school, usually a standard public school, that their child attended prior to enrolling in their charter school.

The poll of 300 parents of New York charter school students is the first attempt to accurately gauge the degree of parental satisfaction with charter schools, and to explain their consistent popularity in New York.

The report's main findings are:

  • Parents throughout New York State indicate high levels of satisfaction with their child's charter school, with 42 percent giving their charter school an "A" grade overall compared to only 21 percent who gave their child's prior school an "A."
  • Some 51 percent of respondents say their charter school deserves an "A" for its quality of instruction, and 28 percent say it deserves a "B," while only 4 percent gave their charter school an "F."

When judging the individual components of charter schools, 90 percent of parents were satisfied with the safety of the schools, 87 percent were satisfied with parent-teacher relationships, 86 percent with the amount and quality of homework and 85 percent with class size.

  • Some 84 percent of parents were satisfied with the schools academic quality, and 81 percent were satisfied with discipline and communications from school personnel.
  • About 79 percent of parents re-enrolled their children in the same charter school for the current school year.

Those who didn't were usually those who did not have to or couldn't, because their child graduated or the family moved to another town for example.

Source: Duncan McCully and Patricia J. Malin, "What Parents Think of New York's Charter Schools," Civic Report, No. 37, June 2003, Manhattan Institute.

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