Commentary

Most Market-Oriented Education City in America Still Rocking Kids World

The good news out of New Orleans, where close to 80 percent of students are now in charter schools, just keeps coming. As the Times-Picayune reports:

New Orleans public schools are improving test scores more rapidly than the state as a whole among three critical groups: African-American students, low-income students and special education students. . . .

For the first time since Louisiana began keeping track, a higher percentage of African-American students in New Orleans schools scored at or above grade level on the state’s high-stakes test than those statewide: 53 percent in New Orleans compared to 51 percent in the state as a whole. That’s a milestone, especially considering that four years ago only 32 percent of African-American public school students in New Orleans could make that claim, compared to 43 percent statewide.

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.