charter schools

Grant Blankenship / GPB News

In recent years, Atlanta has been on a mission to turn around failing public schools, while many parents turn to charter schools. David Osborne is author of the new book, “Reinventing America’s Schools.” He suggests treating all schools a bit like charter schools would improve the situation. We talk with David Osborne ahead of an appearance in Atlanta.

In recent years, Atlanta has been on a mission to turn around failing public schools, while many parents turn to charter schools. David Osborne is author of the new book, “Reinventing America’s Schools.” He suggests treating all schools a bit like charter schools would improve the situation. We talk with David Osborne and Maureen Downey, Education Reporter for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

Hurricane Irma is howling towards the Southeast. A state of emergency has been declared for 94 Georgia counties. The hurricane is one of the strongest ever recorded in the Atlantic. Joining us to talk about how best to prepare for this mammoth storm is John Knox, Professor of Geography at the University of Georgia.

In the last year, there's been a big drop in support for charter schools, while other forms of school choice are getting a little less unpopular. That's the top line of a national poll released today.

President Trump and his education secretary Betsy DeVos have put school choice front and center on their education agenda. The general idea of "choice," however, takes many forms.

Grant Blankenship / GPB

On average, scores released in the 2017 Georgia Milestones end of year test show incremental but positive improvement for schools across the state. Look past the big picture, though, and schools still have ground to make up. 

Take third grade literacy, largely held as one of the best predictors of future academic achievement. Third grade literacy ranged from being almost universal in some suburban schools to being largely absent elsewhere.

John Amis / AP Photo

The first charter school in the United States opened up 25 years ago this fall. Since then, the idea of school choice has taken off. Charter schools can give students in struggling public schools more options, but only if those students apply to charter schools and get accepted. We’ll hear about how lotteries could address this in a feature from GPB’s Grant Blankenship.

Grant Blankenship / GPB

All the open seats at the Academy for Classical Education were gone by the time Sammy Smith’s daughters’ names were pulled in the school’s admissions lottery.

By then it was all about the waiting list for the parents still hanging around the ACE cafeteria on a day in February.

President Trump has indicated several times now that his education agenda may feature a school choice program known as tax credit scholarships.

Bill McChesny / Flickr/CC

There are just four legislative days left until Crossover Day 2017. Any bill that hasn’t made it through at least one chamber of the Georgia General Assembly by Friday will be dead for the year.

But, with the clock ticking, there are still a number of major education issues that haven’t crossed over.

During Betsy DeVos' bitter confirmation hearing last month for education secretary, U.S. Sen. Michael Bennet pointed to Denver as a potential national model of a big city school district that's found an innovative, balanced approach to school choice.

What does it mean to declare that #blacklivesmatter in education?

Last month the Movement for Black Lives, representing elements of the Black Lives Matter movement and related groups, issued a detailed policy platform denouncing what it called "corporate-backed," "market driven" "privatization" in school reform, and helped set off a furor over this question.

@latinacademycharterschool

Last month, the founder of the Atlanta Latin Academy Charter School was arrested after he was outed for embezzling school funds. Christopher Clemons spent over $600,000 of the school's money on cars, nightclubs, and real estate. The school has since closed under the weight of financial strain.

We talk with Atlanta Journal-Constitution reporter Molly Bloom about the scandal and what it means for charter school oversight in the future. 

Will A Macon Charter School Open Next Year After All?

May 13, 2016

Will there be classes at a troubled Macon charter school after all?

Last week the Macon Charter Academy announced it would file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy. A written statement from the school's attorney, Atlanta-based Joel Callins, said:

Macon Charter Academy is hopeful that the reorganization process will facilitate the removal of the school’s probation status with the State of Georgia Department of Education, and plans to resume normal recruitment and enrollment for the 2017-2018 school year.

Later in the statement, Callins writes: