New York’s Legislature is unmoved by the desperate desire of city families to have access to more high-quality charter schools. Lawmakers’ reluctance to lift the unconscionable cap on charter-school creation — and indeed the cap’s very existence — is based on notions that simply aren’t true, however: that charters harm the city’s district-run public schools and divert funds from those schools’ students.
Let’s review the facts, all publicly available from the city’s Independent Budget Office. Between 2006-07 and 2020-21, enrollment in the city’s charter schools increased by 123,000 students, or almost 800%. During the same period, per-pupil spending at the Department of Education increased by more than $12,000, or 71%. Even after adjusting for inflation, the spending hike was more than $4,800, almost 20%.
Ray Domanico is a senior fellow and director of education policy at the Manhattan Institute.
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