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Monday, April 19, 2021

Shawgi Tell: Inflated Charter School Waitlists | Dissident Voice

Inflated Charter School Waitlists | Dissident Voice
Inflated Charter School Waitlists

With great frequency, promoters of privately-operated non-profit and for-profit charter schools like to claim that charter schools are so great that they have very long lists of students waiting to get into them. They use such claims and “data” to argue that more charter schools are needed and that more public money should be spent on creating and multiplying more privately-operated charter schools.

However, many reports show that such waitlist numbers need to be taken with a grain of salt because they are usually inaccurate and misleading for various reasons. For example, a recent report from the North Carolina State Board of Education reported that:

During the 2019-2020 school year, over 117,000 North Carolina students were enrolled in [200] charter schools. As of October 1, 2020, over 126,000 North Carolina students are enrolled in charter schools. Self-reported data from the state’s charter schools indicate that 78% of charter schools had a waitlist totaling nearly 76,000 students statewide. (p. 3)

But in a footnote attached to this observation, the report notes that this “Figure may include duplicates, as students are often waitlisted at multiple charter schools.” An article from NC Policy Watch states: “76,000 names on waitlists aren’t the same as 76,000 students.” Names that appear on waitlists at multiple schools can result in a large overcount. Thus, for example, when one student is on multiple school’s waitlists, they are counted as being on each school’s waitlist. In other words, one student could be counted two, three, or more times, thereby inflating the final waitlist number. Such data could cause people to “mistakenly think that demand for charter schools is a lot higher CONTINUE READING: Inflated Charter School Waitlists | Dissident Voice

Big Education Ape: National Education Policy Center: The Myth of Charter School Waitlists | Diane Ravitch's blog -