Florida charter schools earn A’s and F’s at higher rates than traditional public schools

Florida charter schools were more likely than traditional public schools to earn A and F grades under this year’s tougher new standards and tests, state data shows.

Some 48.7 percent of elementary, middle and “combination” charter schools earned A grades, compared to 42.7 percent of traditional public schools, according to Florida Department of Education data.

Meanwhile, 19 charters were stung with F’s (6.1 percent), compared to 28 traditional public schools (1.2 percent).

It appears traditional public schools were harder hit by the higher bar than charters.

Last year, 15 elementary, middle and combination charters were awarded F’s, compared to 17 traditional public schools – a comparison oft-noted by school boards and other critics. At the same time, according to last year’s data, traditional public schools earned A grades at a slightly higher rate than charters, 58 percent to 57 percent.

To see the most recent charter school grades data, check out this this spreadsheet.

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BY Ron Matus

Ron Matus is director for policy and public affairs at Step Up for Students and a former editor of redefinED. He joined Step Up in February 2012 after 20 years in journalism, including eight years as an education reporter with the Tampa Bay Times (formerly the St. Petersburg Times). Ron can be reached at rmatus@stepupforstudents.org or (727) 451-9830. Follow him on Twitter @RonMatus1 and on facebook at facebook.com/redefinedonline.

One Comment

Not included in the data is the fact that charters can cherry pick thier students via eligibility criteria. Even with that advantage, they create more “failing” schools than do the public system. Yet , Florida allows charters to grow…why? Ask the hedge fund managers who love the money to be made. Ask how many Florida legislators have ties to charters.

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