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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Wednesday, January 13, 2010

National charter school alliance says Hawaii laws restrictive

Advertiser Staff

Hawaii is among 13 states that place restrictive caps on charter school growth and should be disqualified from seeking federal Race to the Top education grants, according to a study released today by the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools.

The Alliance said that its rankings — released as states prepare to submit applications for the RTTT program — “provide clear indications of where some states excel and others come up short in charter-related policies.”
Hawaii was listed with Arkansas, Connecticut, Idaho, Iowa, Massachusetts, Missouri, New Hampshire, New York, North Carolina, Oklahoma and Rhode Island — as well as the 11 states that have yet to enact public charter school laws — as states that restrict charter school growth and should be disqualified from RTTT competition.
“No matter how strong its policies in other areas, a state that maintains a cap on charter schools — or passes no charter law at all — is a state that is missing a key building block for reform,” says the study’s lead author, Alliance Vice President for Policy Todd Ziebarth.
"When states combine equitable resources, real autonomy, and tough accountability, charter schools flourish and meet the high expectations of parents and policymakers," Alliance President and CEO Nelson Smith says. "These rankings not only show which states are making the grade, but also show how they do it: by paying attention to specific issues that are crucial to school and student success."
The study is posted on the Alliance’s Web site: www.publiccharters.org