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The World of Ohio Charter Schools

Background

Charter schools, known in Ohio as community schools, are publicly funded primary and secondary schools. They are considered public schools, so tuition is free. However, they have more flexibility in how they operate than traditional public schools. In Ohio, a charter school is operated under a contract with a sponsoring entity.

Approximately 95,000 of Ohio’s 1.8 million students were enrolled in charter schools in the 2010-11 school year.

Charter schools have been a source of conflict among Ohio’s educators and policymakers. Some champion charter schools as alternatives to struggling urban districts around the state and as an option for parents seeking schools that best suit their children. Others say charter schools siphon funding from local public school districts and do not offer students a better education.

In the 2010-11 school year, Ohio had 326 operating charter schools. Some were part of larger networks of schools run by a single operator. That operator can be for-profit or non-profit. White Hat Management, for example, is a for-profit company that runs about 50 schools around the state. Others schools are operated by their local school districts or groups focused on a single charter school.

Latest Posts

Local School Districts Are Subsidizing Ohio Charter Schools, Report Says

Ben K. Adams / Flickr A new study by an Ohio education watchdog group says local tax revenue is essentially subsidizing charter schools, which are non-traditional schools that are often run by outside groups. And the state’s charter schools have been taking a beating lately. In the last week, multiple studies have criticized their performance. [...]

Progressive Think Tank, Ohio Education Association Launch Charter School Website

A liberal think tank and the state’s largest teachers union have launched a website that provides Ohioans comparisons of public school districts and public and private charter schools in an area. But a spokesman for the pro-charter school group My School, My Choice claims the site has false statements about charter schools so data can’t [...]

State Supreme Court Hears Case Against Charter School Operator White Hat

The Ohio Supreme Court heard arguments Tuesday in a case that could change the nature of many charter schools in Ohio. Board members of 10 such community schools filed suit against their own management company arguing for more transparency on how the money they get from the state is being spent.

Teachers And Parents Defend Horizon Science Academies As State Probe Expands

Parents and teachers on Tuesday told the Ohio Board of Education that a recent string of accusations against the Horizon Science Academies is becoming a distraction to student education. Shahrazad Ali, whose grandson is a freshman at the Horizon Science Academy in Cincinnati,went as far as saying that opponents of charter schools are conducting a [...]

Department of Education Accuses ESC of Flouting State Law on Charter Schools

An educational service center in Northeast Ohio is in trouble with the state Department of Education after trying to open a charter school in southern Ohio. Department of Education spokesman John Charlton says the Portage County Educational Service Center violated at least three rules in sponsoring what was being called Hope4Change Academy. First, Portage County [...]

Teachers Deliver Alarming Allegations Against Charter School

The state board of education is launching an investigation into at least one charter school after hearing disturbing testimony from a group of former teachers. Sexual misconduct, racism, teacher intimidation, questionable testing policies, and mishandling of complaints about those claims were among the allegations the teachers brought to a meeting of the state board of [...]

White Hat And Other Charter Operators May Benefit From New Funding

Ohio’s dropout recovery charter schools may get their way after all since a committee of lawmakers re-inserted a provision of an education bill that would give them state funds to educate older students. The funds would become available as part of a Kasich administration initiative that will provide state education dollars to help adults age [...]

How Charter Schools Are Using Sophisticated Marketing To Lure Students

Ohio charter schools are appealing to students’ and parents’ emotions in their advertising in order to persuade students their school is a better choice than regular public school, according to a story published by the Beacon Journal. Ashley Morris and Brittany Landsberger of TheNewsOutlet.org, a student journalism project, write that charter schools are finding success [...]

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