September 8, 2020

Addressing Data Gaps During a Pandemic: How Authorizers Can Continue to Hold Charter Schools to High Standards

By Ashley LiBetti | Jennifer O'Neal Schiess | National Association of Charter School Authorizers

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Great charter school authorizers believe in the charter school promise and relentlessly pursue excellence to give every child an educational option that meets their needs. 

The best charter school authorizers work with communities, schools, and policymakers to maintain high standards and keep the focus on what matters.

In the wake of COVID-19, authorizers have an opportunity to rethink approaches to measuring student success and wellness. In this new collection of resources, Bellwether worked with the National Association of Charter School Authorizers to look at what new and better measures charter school authorizers can use to ensure student learning, school performance, and quality, including:

  • Student growth and progress
  • Student achievement
  • Postsecondary readiness
  • Mission-specific goals
  • Student and family engagement/well-being
  • Opportunity gaps

COVID-19 presents challenges for authorizers, but it also presents opportunities to innovate. It forces a faster timeline for an evolution of accountability that had already started. And the strategies authorizers adopt now can help build the foundation to better assess what we value about school performance going forward.   

You can also read the main brief in the viewer below:

A separate release from last week explores similar issues. Standardized or Customized? How Charter School Authorizers Can Better Support Diverse, High-quality School Options sheds light on what authorizing looks like when fostering a diversity of school models and holding them accountable for quality during COVID-19.

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