The Network for Public Education, which strongly opposes charter schools, also highlights years of problems in the U.S. Department of Education's charter school grant program that were identified in a series of Office of Inspector General reports.

With charter school strikes and unionization drives in the news, a new report looks at why, when, and where charter organization efforts happen.

The numbers of proposed new charter schools known as "no-excuses" type charters has declined over the last five years, as have the rates of approval for such charters, according to new data from the National Association for Charter School Authorizers.

More than half of the nearly 1,000 public high schools where fewer than 50 percent of students earn a diploma in four years are charters, according to an Education Week analysis of federal data. Here's a look at the demographics of those schools and how they compare to regular high schools with low grad rates.

In one quarter of charter high schools, fewer than half of students graduate on time, according to a recent analysis of federal data by the Education Week Research Center. Ed Week also found that there are big variations in the number of alternative schools that states report to the federal government.

Gov. Tony Evers is one of several Democratic governors to come into office this year calling for a pause to school choice expansion.

Charter schools educate only about 7 percent of all public school students. But in some cities, charter schools have made significant inroads.

Following the Los Angeles teachers' strikes, California Gov. Gavin Newsom has asked the state schools chief to convene an expert panel on the effects of charters on the finances of traditional public schools.

Rather than adhering to a specific curriculum, families who "unschool" believe learning happens naturally and should be driven by a student's interests. Education Week spent a "school" day with the Matica family to see this decades-old approach to home schooling in action.

Monica Utsey, a Washington, D.C. mother of two, wanted her sons to learn the full history of black people which has been a driving force in her decision to home school them. She's part of a small, but growing community of black parents opting to teach their children at home.


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