Other states besides Michigan reviewing charter school accountability
Michigan isn't the only state looking to establish stricter guidelines for charter school authorizers. A policy brief by the Education Commission of the States (ECS), reports that while 42 states have charter school legislation, only 33 states have authorizing bodies that are responsible for approving and overseeing charters schools. But only 15 of those states have set standards for authorizers.
A recent Detroit Free Press investigation of charter schools revealed that after 20 years, charter schools in Michigan lack transparency and accountability and there are few restrictions on charter school authorizers. The newspaper's investigation has prompted calls from legislators and the State Superintendent Mike Flanagan for more standards for authorizers when it comes to the closing of under-performing charter schools, reporting student performance, and providing annual reports.
ECS reports other states are following Michigan's initiative.
Besides the move to establish standards for charter school authorizers, states are also looking to establish policies for cyber charter schools. Only 20 states have laws governing them.
ECS has a created a state-by-state database on charter schools covering accountability, authorizing, autonomy, finance and charter school teachers. Go to www.ecs.org to read the group's analysis of Michigan's charter schools.