August 20, 2019
WASHINGTON, D.C. — Today, Education Next (EdNext) released the 2019 EdNext Poll, its 13th annual nationwide survey of public opinion on a range of issues affecting students, education spending, schools, and teachers. With a four-percentage point increase, support for charter schools jumped to 48 percent this year. As Presidential candidates prepare for the 2020 elections, it’s critical that they reflect public support for charter schools in their education platforms.
For more than 25 years, charter schools have maintained bi-partisan support. In the EdNext results 61 percent of Republicans support charter schools while just 27 percent oppose them. For Democrats, 40 percent support charter schools, with 58 percent of Hispanic Democrats, 53 percent of African American Democrats and 30 percent of white Democrats favoring them.
The misinformation about charter schools continues to be an issue we see even in the 2020 Democratic candidate debates. Only 22 percent of survey respondents knew that charter schools can not hold religious services and only 27 percent of respondents knew that charter schools cannot charge tuition. All charter schools are public, open to all and tuition-free. An accurate understanding of charter schools is key for those who hope to cast a vision for our nation’s next education agenda.
National Alliance for Public Charter Schools President and CEO Nina Rees released the following statement:
“The EdNext poll should serve as a wakeup call to 2020 Democratic candidates. Progressives are campaigning with the promise that they represent the desires of Latinx and African American communities. However, unless their education platforms incorporate the support of charter schools, they are not embodying the voices of those communities. Today’s results are a powerful reminder that parents vote with their feet, and support for charter schools is growing.”
About Public Charter Schools
Public charter schools are independent, public, and tuition-free schools that are given the freedom to be more innovative while being held accountable for advancing student achievement. Since 2010, many research studies have found that students in charter schools do better in school than their traditional school peers. For example, one study by the Center for Research on Education Outcomes at Stanford University found that charter schools do a better job teaching low income students, minority students, and students who are still learning English than traditional schools. Separate studies by the Center on Reinventing Public Education and Mathematica Policy Research have found that charter school students are more likely to graduate from high school, go on to college, stay in college and have higher earnings in early adulthood.
About the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools
The National Alliance for Public Charter Schools is the leading national nonprofit organization committed to advancing the public charter school movement. Our mission is to lead public education to unprecedented levels of academic achievement by fostering a strong charter sector. For more information, please visit www.publiccharters.org.