INDIANAPOLIS, IN — Today, the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools released its annual state-by-state ranking of public charter school laws, Measuring Up to the Model: A Ranking of State Public Charter School Laws, Tenth Edition. Indiana took first place for the fourth year in a row, demonstrating the quality of the state’s law.
Indiana’s law does not cap charter school growth, includes multiple authorizers, and provides strong autonomy and accountability. Indiana has also made notable strides in recent years to provide more equitable funding to charter schools, although work remains to be done on behalf of the 39,000 students enrolled in charter schools across the state.
“We place a high premium on parent empowerment in Indiana, as families are in the best position to make decisions based on their child’s needs,” said House Speaker Brian Bosma (R-Indianapolis), a longtime charter school champion. “Expanding public charter school opportunities gives valuable options to parents, particularly those with limited means, to make sure their children have the best opportunity to succeed.”
The biggest area for improvement in Indiana’s law is continuation of efforts to close the inequitable funding gap between charter school students and their counterparts in district schools.
“On behalf of the numerous Hoosier policymakers who have fought to ensure Indiana has a strong charter policy environment, the Indiana Charter School Network is proud to thank the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools for this continued recognition,” said Marcie Brown Carter, Director of the Indiana Charter School Network.
The National Alliance’s 2019 rankings measure each state’s charter school law against the “gold standard” model charter school law, A Model Law for Supporting the Growth of High-Quality Charter Schools: Second Edition, released in October 2016. The Tenth Edition of Measuring Up to the Model ranks public charter school laws in 44 states and the District of Columbia. Each law receives a score based on 21 essential metrics, including accountability, flexibility, and funding equity.
“As we begin National School Choice Week, the timing is right to recognize the role charter schools play in strengthening the public education system as a whole,” said National Alliance President and CEO Nina Rees. “As the report shows, many states are improving the quality of their charter school laws. At the same time, we recognize that until every state has a high-quality law—and every student who wants to attend a charter school is able to—our work is not done. We look forward to working alongside policymakers, school leaders, and education advocates to ensure every state creates an environment for all students to succeed.”
For additional key findings from the report, please view the press release from the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools.