Category: Education

State Reveals New Strategic Plan for Charter Schools

Published Thursday, December 30, 2004 By Angie Green The State Board of Education has approved a new strategic plan for the state’s Charter Schools Program, according to the Georgia Department of Education’s latest “Inside Charter School” report. The Georgia Department of Education and State Board Charter Schools Committee developed the plan, which includes a mission, vision and goals for Georgia’s Public Charter Schools Program. The long-term, five-year goals are supported by specific objectives and strategies and will be evaluated by stated outcome measures, according to the report. This is the first time the state has taken the lead in creating a framework of support for the program. Initial objectives focus on collaboration with all charter stakeholders, both within and outside… View Article

Neighborhood Charter School Sets Standard

Published Saturday, November 20, 2004 By Angie Green With education reform beginning to sweep Georgia, some schools are already ahead of the game. Neighborhood Charter School in Atlanta, for instance, is in its third year of operation. Despite a fire that has left the school homeless for almost two years, and 27 percent of the students enrolled in the free and reduced lunch program, the students continue to make tremendous gains in core academic areas. On the Criterion Referenced Competency Test (CRCT), 97 percent of Neighborhood’s first-graders met or exceeded the reading standard, while 90 percent did so in the fourth grade. In the third grade, 100 percent of the students met or exceeded the English/Language Arts Standard. And in… View Article

An Education on Charter Schools

By Dr. Holly Robinson and Eric Wearne The American Federation of Teachers (AFT) ignited a national controversy when it published a study recently that contends charter schools are underperforming compared with traditional public schools. The controversy centers on how to evaluate the AFT’s reported test scores. It is important, however, that any evaluation take into account the academic achievement of these students before they entered their charter schools, to keep in mind that charter schools are patronized heavily by poor and minority students, and to acknowledge the astonishing variety of charter schools. Responding to the AFT study, which received widespread coverage after a New York Times report, researchers at Harvard’s Program in Education Policy and Governance pointed out that comparing… View Article

Charter Schools in North Carolina

Proponents of school choice argue that charter schools improve the quality of education. Opponents retort that they just waste education dollars. A new report from the National Bureau of Economic Research finds that charter schools did improve school quality in North Carolina. In 1996, North Carolina had no charter schools. By 2000, it had 91 charter schools that enrolled 14,899 students, about 1 percent of the state’s total public school enrollment. To determine whether these charter schools accomplished anything, the authors used end of year test scores for grades three through eight from North Carolina’s statewide testing program. They found: Charter school competition raised the composite test scores in district schools, even though the students leaving district schools for the… View Article

Georgia Charter School Handbook

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY The Technical Assistance section of the Charter School Resource Center has been developed to provide in-depth information about charter school operations in Georgia under six main topics: Mission Statements; Curriculum; Finances and Facilities; Accountability and Assessment; Governance and Leadership; and Students, Parents and the Community. There are many links, examples, explanations, and other resources to help organizers through the difficult processes of creating and maintaining charter schools in the state of Georgia, but while the Technical Assistance resources explain many charter school issues in detail, four basic areas must be addressed for a charter school to be successful: Academics, Business, Legal and Public Relations. Academics A charter provides a school with more freedom to help students by implementing… View Article

Central Education Center: A Model for the Future

By Dr. Holly A. Robinson Imagine a high school where students learn real-world work skills – and are prepared for real jobs in real, local businesses. Imagine a school where bank presidents and corporate board members come to speak to students. Where youngsters get lessons tailored to fit the needs of local industry. Where businesses team up with educators. Where students full of enthusiasm and hope triumphantly receive the first A’s they’ve ever gotten in their lives. Where civic leaders, business execs, school officials – even the local technical college, band together to ensure that a school – a charter school – helps to meet the needs of local businesses and local young people seeking jobs and careers. Impossible? Pie-in-the-sky?… View Article

A Review of Georgia’s Education Standards

By Vani L. Krishnamurthy   Introduction While many blame schools and teachers for the failure to produce a learned, well-equipped individual after the completion of high school, one additional factor in a public school student’s education is being overlooked – state education standards. Georgia recently revised its standards, the Quality Core Curriculum (QCC). The new QCC has many successes and is a milestone in terms of progressing from the old standards, but there is always room for improvement in any sector of public school education. Although this revised QCC succeeds in improving Georgia’s public grade schools, it has fallen short of some of its goals. When teachers were surveyed by the Atlanta Journal Constitution before the revision, most agreed that… View Article

Why Georgia Needs a New Approach to Testing

By Dr. Franklin Shumake Georgia spent $4 million in 1995 (test development, administration and training) evaluating students using Georgia-designed tests that compare Georgia students with other Georgia students. Moreover, the tests are geared specifically to a Georgia curriculum. Ironically, this testing program is not only very costly, it perpetuates mediocrity and prevents parents and teachers from knowing how Georgia students compare with students from other states and regions. Individual Scores and National Comparisons Student achievement will improve in Georgia on a student-by-student basis. Teachers can best assist students when they have a clear picture of the academic strengths and weaknesses of individual students. A testing program should provide teachers with this data, enabling them to teach a student rather than… View Article
By Sunny Park Sunny Park was born in 1942 in Seoul, South Korea. After coming to the United States in 1967 and gaining full citizenship in 1974, he became a successful businessman and an active member of his community. As a relative newcomer to this country, he is concerned that America’s youth are not being taught, and consequently do not fully appreciate, the principles their forbearers fought for in creating the freest nation on Earth and how fortunate they are to be Americans.  As an immigrant, I have personally learned and benefitted from the tremendous value of this great country, the United States of America. I think it can be summarized as follows: • Freedom — A people willing to… View Article

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