"We should do more charter schools," Ferrer said, "but we have a dropout crisis in our public schools."It is dismaying to me that someone running for mayor in this city is falling prey to the most common misconception about charter schools. Charter schools ARE public schools.
I come across this misconception all the time, and many people are shocked to learn that charters receive public funds (if not an equal proportion), kids can go there for free, and they are required to take all city and state-mandated assessments. They must comply with No Child Left Behind if they receive Title I funding, which I would venture to guess that most of them do.
Charter schools are public schools. I bet if we did a better job at informing people of this fact, it wouldn't be as hard a struggle to lift the cap.
P.S. Something else the public should know about charter schools -- a recent study shows that they don't serve a proportionate number of special ed students.