Public Schools vs. Private/Charter Schools
Public Schools Outperform Private and Charter Counterparts
FACT: A National Center for Education Statistics study found that while students in private schools achieved at slightly higher levels, when adjusted for student characteristics including poverty and background, public schools did better in both reading and math and in grades 4 and 8.
A National Center for Education Statistics study found similar results when it compared a special oversample of charter schools to public schools as a whole. Fourth grade public school students performed better than charter school counterparts when school and student characteristics were taken into account. Among students eligible for free or reduced-price lunch in particular, the public school fourth-graders outperformed charter school counterparts in reading and math.
FACT: Public schools are accountable in ways vouchers and private schools never will be. Voucher programs do not require private schools to meet the same standards for achievement, testing, safety, certified teachers, class size or financial accountability as public schools. Voucher programs in Florida, Cleveland and Milwaukee have been plagued with scandals and corruption due to lack of accountability. In the District of Columbia, some schools in the voucher program were not properly licensed for use as school buildings.
The Center for Education Progress report Are Private High Schools Better Academically Than Public High Schools? provides powerful, positive messages that build on what we already know about public schooling as well as what the public cares about in public schooling. (October 2007)
"Two New Reports Provide New Ammunition Against Vouchers" examines the most recent research and illustrates what is good about public education. (The Leader's Edge, October 2007)