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Charter School Enrollment Breaks 3 Million Mark, Says Advocacy Group

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A new report from the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools estimates that the number of students enrolled in charter schools nationally has surpassed 3 million for the first time. 

The group, which advocates for charter schools at both the federal and state levels, released its annual estimates on the number of students attending charter schools, as well as how many charter schools are in operation.

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The report says there are now more than 6,900 charter schools nationally, with around 3.1 million students attending them. That would mean that charter enrollment has nearly tripled in the last 10 years. However, it still only makes up a small fraction of overall K-12 public school enrollment nationally—around 5 percent.

charter enrollment growth graph - NAPCS.PNG

Which states closed the most charter schools?

Although more than 300 new schools opened in the fall of 2016, there were also 211 closures. The report says schools were closed for a number of reasons, including low enrollment, financial issues, and low academic performance.

So far this year, the states with the most charter school closures were California and Texas at 30, followed by Florida with 25, Ohio at 22, and Georgia with 17 closed schools.

Texas, California, and Florida also saw the most openings.

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Photo: Harvest kindergartners, from left, Myra Marshall, E'Miya Carter, Aubrey Anderson, Chrishonna Crittendon, Royalty Graves, and JaNay Ross, head to lunch.
—Ackerman + Gruber for Education Week


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