New research shows students who attended charter or charter-like “Innovation Network Schools” in Indianapolis are producing better academic results across virtually every demographic. New data from the Stanford University’s Center for Research on Education Outcomes (CREDO) found that in the 2018-2019 school year, charter school students learned the equivalent of 64 more days of instruction in reading and 116 days in math, compared to their district school peers with historically marginalized Black, Hispanic, and low-income charter school students had even bigger gains.
- K-12 students showed weaker learning gains in both reading and math than students statewide
- Charter or charter-type schools posted better results across virtually every demographic.
- Aiming to “build on what works, and fix where we aren’t delivering for students”.
- The findings showed that Black charter school students in Indianapolis had more growth in math than the average Black student statewide; while Black students in traditional district schools performed worse than the typical Indiana student in both reading and math.
- Students, including those from low-income families, at charters and Innovation Network Schools outperformed district peers across subgroups.
- Similarly, English Language Learners in city charter and Innovation Network Schools saw better gains than district students.
- Success is attributed to locally grown programs with leaders “who know Indianapolis”, most being people of color who directly reflect the racial backgrounds of students.
- The sector’s performance is “a direct result of schools that are created and sustained relative to what our community wants and needs.”
- Local officials look favorably upon charters, with school district and charters working closely together.
- Principals participate in the Paramount Schools of Excellence network to collaborate regularly with other charter leaders, talking best practices, data, ideas, and approaches to improve academic performance.
- Networks are homegrown and allow teachers and administrators to focus on exactly what their community needs.