Charter schools lead a turnaround of New Orleans public schools

Even pre-Katrina, New Orleans had a reputation as one of the worst public school systems in the United States. Post-Katrina, the city moved to a new public school model incorporating many more charter schools.

USA Today reports:

52 charter schools [operate] in New Orleans, which also has 37 traditionally run schools. Nearly 60% of the city’s public school students attend charter schools — the highest percentage of any American city. School district officials hope to raise that percentage to 75% in the coming years.

New Orleans’ school district’s performance score — a tally of test scores and other performance measures — jumped from 56.9 pre-Katrina to 66.4 last year, according to state Department of Education figures. Statewide, the average during that same period stayed roughly the same: 87.4 pre-Katrina and 87.2 last year.

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