Charter Schools Kick Out Far More Problem Students, But What is the Alternative?

Lauren Williams's picture
Monday, January 7, 2013

Many educators on this blog complain that charter schools enjoy a critical edge over their non-charter counterparts: They have far more freedom to kick out problem students.

The Washington Post decided to test that claim and found that the District of Columbia’s public charter schools expel students at a far higher rate than the city’s traditional public schools. Those problem kids often return to the traditional public school down the street, which has far greater pressure to keep all students.

I am not sure what the answer is here — should charter schools face more hurdles before they expel students or should traditional public schools face fewer? Should we hold public schools to a higher bar for the expulsion of younger students?  And where should be put those students once they are expelled? Are alternative programs effective?

The Post investigation is lengthy, and I would recommend that you read the entire piece before commenting here.

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