“Charter schools offered a way to stimulate innovation within public education by giving educators greater autonomy in exchange for greater accountability,” said Barbara O'Brien. Charter schools create opportunities and open doors for kids who would otherwise be left behind. They do it by using the best of the American spirit -- entrepreneurship, innovation, and hard work. They are an asset, not a threat, to our public education system.”
O'Brien went on to note the following characteristics of successful charter schools:
* They welcome accountability.
* They have found ways to have more hours per school day and more days per school year so that their students can catch up -- with the support of their teachers and parents.
* They welcome data.
* They foster a culture of achievement.
* They have demonstrated the importance of the leadership of a good principal.
* They welcome high performance standards.
* They attract principals and teachers who want the challenge of overcoming great odds to boost their stuents' achievement.
* They innovate with every component of a school from curriculum to assessment to schedule.
Lt. Gov. O'Brien was introduced at the hearing by U.S. Rep. Jared Polis, a founder of the three New America Schools and the Academy of Urban Learning, all charter schools.
Thursday, June 4, 2009
Congressional Committee Hears What Makes Charter Schools Successful
Today the U.S. House of Representative's Education Committee heard testimony on what makes charter schools successful. Colorado's Lt. Governor, Barbara O'Brien, was one of the people testifying. Barbara O'Brien lobbied for the Colorado Charter Schools Act in 1993 when she was with the Colorado Children's Campaign.