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Key external

research and
data on the
performance of
the California
charter school
Comparing the California and the
Massachusetts charter sectors

Don't forget
that Ginger
The Massachusetts charter sector is strong but it is
comparatively tiny & not nearly as diverse as CA or LA.
Rogers did
everything Fred Los Angeles charter sector is nearly four times as big,
Astaire did, with similarly strong academic performance and
...backwards and
serving far more historically disadvantaged students.

in high heels.
2015-16 School Counts
More students are served in Los Angeless
strong charter sector than in the entire
state of Massachusetts (156,000 students
in LA charters in 2015-16 vs. only 40,000
charter students in the entire state of MA).
Los Angeles charter schools most recent
NAEP scores are among highest in the
country, on par with Massachusetts

NAEP TUDA Test Score Averages (2015)

Grade 4 Grade 8
Level Math Reading Math Reading
LA Charters 249 237 294 276
LA Non Charters 221 200 261 249
California Avg 232 213 275 259
Massachusetts Avg 251 235 297 274

NOTE: there were no other CA districts besides LAUSD with a large enough sample size
on the NAEP to be able to compare charters to traditional public schools. The next NAEP test results will be publicly reported in Fall 2017.
These NAEP scores translate into
stunning differences in proficiency
On the NAEP assessments, LAUSD charters are performing on par with
the Massachusetts state average while serving 42% more Latino
students, 42% more low income students and more English Learners.
CREDO 2013 & 2014 studies show that the Los
Angeles charter sector is among the strongest in
the nation in accelerating student growth
Average Learning Gains for Charter Schools, 2011
Reading Math
0.14 101
Standard Days of
Deviations 0.12 86 Learning
0.1 72
0.08 58
0.06 43


0.02 14

0 0
Massachusetts Charters Los Angeles Charters ** Significant
(n=25,437 matched students) (n=86,981 matched students) at p 0.01

CREDO found Bostons charter sector to be even higher performing than MA (0.34 standard deviations in reading and 0.36 in math)
but this was based on less than 7,000 students, so MA is more appropriate comparison to gauge relative strength of LA charter sector.
For apples-to-apples comparison, 2011 results are shown (most recent year of comparable data between the two reports). LA charter
results are from CREDO 2014 Los Angeles study, page 16. MA charter results are from CREDO 2013 Massachusetts study, page 18
CREDO 2015 Urban
Charters Study showed
areas of emerging
strength across
California in the Bay
and in Southern CA*
While Bostons sector is clearly
the strongest, it is based on the
performance of only 2,700
charter school students.
Californias strong urban charter
sectors studied in the report, on
the other hand, represented
nearly 83,000 matched students.
In math, Californias urban
charter schools are adding
between 2 and 7 of additional
months of learning for these
tens of thousands of students.
*Bay Area= Oakland & SF, South Bay= greater
San Jose, Southern CA=LA, Long Beach and San
CREDO 2015 Urban
Charters Study
showed similar
strengths in reading
Californias urban charter
schools are adding an average
of between 2 and 5 of
additional months of learning in
reading for the tens of
thousands of students served in
these areas.
These learning gains for urban
charter students in California
are significantly stronger for
low-income students, English
language learners, and students
with disabilities in both math
and reading.
CREDO finds Californias performance is not
uniformly strong, but the untold story is the
staggering scale of outperforming charters in CA
On average, CREDO studies find Californias charter sector
is not as strong as other states (e.g., DC, MA, NJ, NY, RI).
CCSA has documented this mixed distribution of
performance in our annual Portrait of the Movement reports.
But the real story of CA, the reason for optimism, is not in
the averages. It is in the sheer size and scale of quality for
massive numbers of students in strong charter sectors
across California (e.g., Los Angeles, Oakland, San Jose).
Tens of thousands of California students (particularly low
income and minority students) are receiving accelerated
learning gains in CA charter schools. The number of students
benefitting is on a scale unlike anything else in the nation.
Californias charter schools deliver
excellence on massive scale
There are more charter schools in California in the top 5% of
performance on CCSAs Similar Students Measure (n=112) than
the total number of charter schools in the state of MA (n=81).
2012-13 charter enrollment*
CA regions of
Charter region Students
Boston 8k
Cleveland 17k
highlighted in
DC 35k CREDO 2015
Denver 12k Urban Charters
Detroit 51k report enrolled
Indianapolis 12k 190k students CREDO 2013, 2015, and
Memphis 7k in 2012-13, 2017 studies show CA charter
Milwaukee 18k compared to schools are delivering
Nashville 3k much smaller additional weeks and months
New Orleans 36k regions of
NY City 58k
of learning for students most
strength in in need on a staggering scale.
Newark 9k
Philadelphia 55k
other states
**Bay Area= Oakland & SF, South Bay= greater San
*Data from A Growing Movement, Americas Largest Charter School Communities, NAPCS 2014 Jose, Southern CA=LA, Long Beach and San Diego
The size of Californias charter sector,
combined with its strength, is unparalleled
20% of all charter school students in the nation are in California.
Californias charter sector has K-12 enrollment equivalent to the
29th largest state in the nation.
In 2016-17 603,000 students attend CA charter schools
10% of all CA
REGIONALLY 2016-17 California Enrollment public school students
% CHARTER are in charters
charter total district SCHOOL

Oakland USD
LAUSD charter schools
San Jose city 28,133 108,226 26% 160,000+ students are
Los Angeles USD
San Diego USD
equivalent to the 19th
Sacramento City USD 5,730 46,581 12% largest district in the
San Francisco USD 7,353 60,252 12%
Sources: National Center for Education Statistics and California Department of Education data files
nation; more than the
entire K-12 population
of 9 other states.
For a charter sector the size of the 29th largest
state to continually strengthen over time is a
substantial accomplishment
The history of CREDOs research
work has shown steady and
consistent, even if gradual,
improvement in performance of
the California charter sector.

Californias Academic
Performance Index (API)
also showed steady
strengthening, even as the
number and proportion of
underserved students in
charter schools increased