« What Can and Can't American Education Learn From Singapore? | Main | Markups to Watch this Week on the Hill--UPDATED »

Charter School Boards—Not Boring, Very Important!

Greg Richmond has a great and important commentary about charter school board independence in this week's EdWeek. And while "charter school board independence" may sound like a snoozer of an issue, it's actually critically important.

I've found that most people not closely engaged in charter school issues don't really understand the importance of charter school boards. The public imagination tends to identify charter schools with visionary school leaders and founders, or well-known EMOs and CMOs, such as Edison or KIPP. But it's the independent governing boards of charter schools who are actually central to what makes public charter schools, public charter schools.

They're the ones who hold the school's charter, and it's they who are ultimately accountable to authorizers for charter schools' student performance, appropriate use of public funds, and fulfillment of their responsibilities as public schools. Along with authorizers, charter school boards are the entities responsible for ensuring that charter schools act in the public interest. EMOs, CMOs, and school leaders should work for governing boards—not the other way around. Unfortunately, that hasn't always been the case, but authorizers and the charter community have learned from early missteps what's necessary to ensure well-functioning, independent charter school boards—although, as Greg notes, state policymakers [ahem, Ohio!] don't always heed these lessons.

Greg's piece describes the six criteria for ensuring strong, independent board governance of charter schools. I should add that while Greg focuses on independence in cases where EMOs and CMOs are involved, we've learned that it's equally problematic when a visionary school leader or founder selects the school's board and wields influence over them$mdash;and sometimes a harder problem to address.

You must be logged in to leave a comment. Login |  Register
Ground Rules for Posting
We encourage lively debate, but please be respectful of others. Profanity and personal attacks are prohibited. By commenting, you are agreeing to abide by our user agreement.
All comments are public.

Advertisement

Recent Comments

Archives

Categories

Technorati

Technorati search

» Blogs that link here

Tags

AFT
Alex Grodd
Ana Menezes
Andrew Kelly
appropriations
ARRA
Aspire Public Schools
authorizing
Better Lesson
Bill Ferguson
certification
charter schools
child care
children's literature
choice
civil rights
CLASS
Core Knowledge
curriculum
D.C.
democracy
early childhood
Early Learning Challenge Grant
economics
elections
English language learners
entrepreneurship
equity
Evan Stone
fathers
finance
fix poverty first
Hailly Korman
harlem children's zone
HEA
Head Start
head start
health care
Higher Education
home-based child care
homeschooling
housing
How we think and talk about pre-k evidence
i3
IDEA
income inequality
instruction
international
Jason Chaffetz
Jen Medbery
just for fun
Justin Cohen
Kaya Henderson
Kenya
kindergarten
KIPP
Kirabo Jackson
Kwame Brown
land use
LearnBoost
libertarians
LIFO
literacy
Los Angeles
Louise Stoney
Mark Zuckerberg
Maryland
Massachusetts
Memphis
Michelle Rhee
Michigan
Mickey Muldoon
Neerav Kingsland
New Jersey
New Orleans
NewtownReaction
Next Gen Leaders
Next Gen leaders
nonsense
NSVF Summit
NYT
organizing
parent engagement
parenting
parking
pell grants
politics
poverty
PreK-3rd
presidents
principals
productivity
QRIS
Race to the Top
Rafael Corrales
redshirting
regulation
religion
rick hess
Roxanna Elden
RTT
san francisco
school choice
social services
SOTU
special education
Stephanie Wilson
stimulus
story
Sydney Morris
tax credits
Teacher Prep
teachers
technology
Title I
unions
urban issues
Vincent Gray
vouchers
Waiting for Superman
Washington
West Virginia
zoning