Florida HS Grades Show No Difference Between Charter Schools and Public Schools

While the Florida media are obliged to publish whatever conclusions that the hacks at the FLDOE Bush Foundation release , Dr. Stanley Smith of UCF has emerged as a counterweight to their predictable everything is just swell fluff. Gina Jordan of StateImpact has Dr. Smith’s comparison of charter schools to public schools from Florida’ just released high school grades.

Smith examined 491 high schools. 46 of them are charter schools.

He says that at first glance, the average scores suggest charters are the stronger performers.

“Without any adjustments for poverty or minority status, it appears that the charter high schools perform better by a statistically significant difference of 4.37 percent,” Smith said.

But he says this is misleading because charter schools serve a higher percentage of minority students and a lower percentage of students in poverty.

Smith says that if you look at minorities alone without any income adjustment, they have a negative effect on scores.  But he argues that most or all of that negative effect by minorities is really an income effect and when you control for income levels in schools, minorities actually improve school scores.

“When the income level and minority status is controlled, the difference between charters and non-charters decreases from 4.37 to 0.43 percent, which is not a statistically significant difference,” Smith said.

“These adjusted results indicate that high school charters perform as well, but not significantly different, as high school non-charters,” Smith said.

He says the change in results means the difference between the school grades of charters and non-charters “should not be considered valid in Florida if income level and minority status are not both controlled.”

The FLDOE  already has released a list of sloppy kisses from the usual suspects. If it acts in it’s usual fashion, a contrarian view will be forthcoming shortly.


About Bob Sikes

A long time ago and a planet far, far away I was an athletic trainer for the New York Mets. I was blessed to be part of the now legendary 1986 World Series Championship. My late father told me that I'd one day be thankful I had that degree in teaching from Florida State University. He was right and I became twice blesses to become a teacher in the late 1990's. After dabbling with writing about the Mets and then politics, I settled on education.
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2 Responses to Florida HS Grades Show No Difference Between Charter Schools and Public Schools

  1. Diane Kepus says:

    With a the hoop-de-la regarding Charter schools and how great they are you would think they would be flying on in regard to status and that each and every student would be on the National Honor rolls.

    But wait, we cannot forget that a large majority of the Charter schools are in those “nasty” low income or minority areas – “how can you expect them to excel/” We only put our Charter school here so we could blame “the low income and minority influences” when it fails. Never mind taking responsibility and that they are far more interested in making profit than educating.

    Just like all the money surrounding International Baccalaureate (IB) and the hundreds of millions of dollars that have been spent of taxpayers money without their knowledge in most cases to indoctrinate our children- every last one of those kids in high school should be on the National Honor Society rolls. But they are NOT!

    Why not? My guess is those kids are so engrossed in translating how they have been raised and taught most of their lives into a socialist indoctrination mentality, they have a hard time sorting things out.

    In both cases it is all about MONEY! MONEY for the EDUCATORS? BUSINESS PARTNERS who say they are concerned about our kids? General public education is failing our kids! Really? The only reason there is any problem with the education our children are receiving in public schols is because big government and big business got their noses involved in something that should have never been any of their business!

    They do NOT give one hogs ear about our children – only how the name Education might make them richer!

    Holly Cow Florida – Jonathan Hage, CEO of Charter Schools USA was just named Floridian of the Year! He is the money and focus behind the very, very brand new Governor’s Charter School 6 miles from the Tallahassee capital and it only cost $11.4M to build. I wonder how many of children of the legislators who sleep with Jeb Bush and write and vote on all the Charter school legislation to support Hage and Bush are attending that school.

    What I would really like to know in the scandalous scheme of things is how many of our Florida legislators send their children to PUBLIC schools – not Charter public for profit schools, but PUBLIC schools!

  2. But of course we all know that income level has nothing to do with educational outcomes, because “poverty is not destiny” and any teacher who tries to make the case that it DOES matter is told he/she is “making excuses.”

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