Tuesday, May 01, 2012
As the 2012 National Charter Schools Week approaches, one proponent says the movement has seen an explosive growth in student participation in the last five years.
Since 2007, the number of students enrolled in public charter schools has skyrocketed from 1.1 million to more than two million -- a 76-percent increase. Jeff Reed of the Friedman Foundation for Educational Choice
says charter schools are now in 41 states and the District of Columbia.
"Families across the country are seeking options. They want learning environments that fit their kids' needs appropriately," he says. "Whereas a traditional public school is basically a one-size-fits-all model, charter school laws allow educators, principals, teachers and education entrepreneurs to start new schools that are uniquely tailored to kids' needs."
In order to expand school choice, Reed says it is key to promote the fact that children are different and each one learns differently.
"Rather than building these huge factory-type schools, where you put all these kids into the schools and expect them to learn the same time, the same way -- kids are different, and kids need different learning environments," he contends.
The National Charter Schools Week will be celebrated May 6-12.