Los Angeles Charters Pwned District Schools

In Los Angeles, Charters pwned district schools. The LA school board voted to exclude charter schools from the public school choice competition and give first priority to in-district schools. This is especially depressing given how much better charters are doing overall and how much better the charters that won the first round of public school choice are doing compared to the in-district providers.

The California Charter Schools Assoication keeps score and charter schools in Los Angeles are winning.

Los Angeles charter schools made the largest difference for the most disadvantaged kids.

  • Both LAUSD and charter schools have seen their median API scores increase in the past four years. Charters have seen bigger cumulative gains than the district over that period at the elementary and high school levels.
  • Median charter school API scores are higher than the district’s for several key subgroups including: African Americans (23 point difference), Latinos (30 point difference), English Language Learners (20 point difference) and Socioeconomically Disadvantaged Students (22 point difference). See more detailed charts below.
  • The difference between district and charter performance is particularly notable for Socioeconomically Disadvantaged and Latino students in charter high schools. Students from those subgroups had median API scores that were over 100 points higher than their counterparts at non-charters. English Learners at charter middle schools also had median API scores over 100 points higher than their non-charter counterparts.

Lisa Snell is the director of education and child welfare at Reason Foundation, a nonprofit think tank advancing free minds and free markets.

Snell has frequently testified before the California State Legislature and numerous other state legislatures and government agencies. She has authored policy studies on school finance and weighted student funding, universal preschool, school violence, charter schools, and child advocacy centers.

Snell is a frequent contributor to Reason magazine, School Reform News and Privatization Watch. Her writing has also appeared in Education Week, Edutopia, The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, San Francisco Chronicle, Orange County Register, Los Angeles Times, and numerous other publications.

Ms. Snell is also an advisory board member to the National Quality Improvement Center for the Children's Bureau; is on the charter school accreditation team for the American Academy for Liberal Education; and serves as a board member for the California Virtual Academy.

Before joining Reason Foundation, Snell taught public speaking and argumentation courses at California State University, Fullerton. She earned a Master of Arts in communication from California State University, Fullerton.