About Charters



INCS Policy Briefs

This Policy Brief pushes its readers to think about what metrics and practices are important to determine college success, and shares five successful approaches currently used by Illinois charter schools to ensure students are getting to and through college at high rates. Download the  Winter 2013 Policy Brief.
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Over the years, charter public schools have pushed ACT performance higher at CPS by focusing on academic growth and relentless efforts to improve student outcomes. In 2013, the highest performing non-selective Chicago Public Schools high schools are charter schools with 11 schools making the top 10 rankings. Additionally, charter schools account for 19 of the[…]
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Unlike traditional policy briefs  that assess programs descriptively and  often call for additional research, INCS  Action Research highlights charter  schools and their innovative practices to  challenge how schools and their systems  operate. Click here to download INCS Summer 2012 Policy Brief,  Moving Toward a Longer, Smarter School Day and School Year
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By Andrew Broy, President April 2011 With the recent appointment of an entirely new CPS Board and Jean-Claude Brizard as Chicago Public Schools CEO, Chicago has a rare opportunity to structurally change the district by organizing our schools for student performance. While it may be tempting to take incremental steps, nothing short of a comprehensive[…]
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Winter 2015 Issue Brief  *NEW*

Chicago’s public school system has undergone a dramatic transformation over the past twenty years.The transformation has gone largely unnoticed, but it has had a profound impact on the city’s overall educational performance. Unlike twenty years ago, Chicago students are now just as likely to attend a school choice option as they are to attend their local zoned school. As we demonstrate in this issue brief, Chicago students are far better off because of school choice.

Fall 2015 Issue Brief

Since the first charter high school opened its doors in 1997, Chicago’s charter public high schools have been transforming the public education system to improve academic achievement and outcomes, especially for African-American and Latino students who have historically faced barriers to academic success. This issue brief examines how charter public high schools have moved the needle on student academic growth, high school graduation, and college enrollment.

Profiles  2013

Profiles is an annual collective look at the Illinois charter community, our schools, and the students and communities we serve.

Paving A New Path

Paving a New Path provides practical advice for the key phases of planning a charter school, from exploring the idea of charter school development to submitting a high-quality charter school proposal and preparing to open your school.

Drawing upon the collective wisdom and technical information from the Illinois Network of Charter Schools and other experts in charter school development, this book with help you learn about the major design areas, from the educational program to facilities and operations, as well as the critical work of gaining community support and school district buy-in.

Illinois Statewide Survey: Public Education & Charter Public Schools

Education remains one of the highest priorities among voters, and there are strong opinions on the current state of Illinois’ public schools, according to the poll conducted by Public Opinion Strategies. Polling more than 600 registered voters, including both parents and non-parents across a wide spectrum of demographics, political parties, and counties in Illinois, the report points to indisputable support for school choice and charter schools in Illinois. This is the most recent statewide poll on public education, school choice, and charter schools.

Mathematica Institute’s 2014 study

This study found that charter high schools in Chicago boost their students’ rates of graduation by 7-11 percentage points, college enrollment by 11 percentage points and, college persistence by 7 percentage points. Read the summary of Charter High Schools’ Effects on Long-Term Attainment and Earnings.

CREDO 2013 study

This Stanford University study found, on average, charter school students experience two weeks more growth in reading and a month more growth in math compared to their traditional public school counterparts.

Rand Corporation’s 2009 study

According to this study, students attending a charter high school were 8 to 10 percentage points more likely to enroll in college than were their traditional public school peers.

Richard Day Research’s 2011 survey

This survey – commissioned by the Renaissance Schools Fund (now “New Schools for Chicago”) and conducted by a research firm now called “Market Probe” – found that 66% of charter parents were “very satisfied” with their children’s education, compared to only 37% of other CPS parents.

Check out the  National Alliance for Charter Public Schools Research and Publication list for an up-to-date list of publications about charter schools, who they serve, how they perform, and the policies that impact them maintained by our national advocacy partner.