why we chose a charter school

My son goes to a charter school, and I love it.

Here are just a few of the things I love about his school:

  • Tons of communication (both good & bad) from his teachers
  • Emphasis on science, art and math
  • Environment of well-behaved kids
  • Early start to the day lets me get to work
  • Culture of educational challenge & achievement

I asked my son what his favorite thing about school is and he said, “Number Stories. That’s my favorite part of the day.” My kid loves math. This makes me happy.

Why We Chose a Charter School

We chose our school based on the criteria important to us – academics, environment, and location. I did a lot of research and tried to make a data-based decision.

I have to admit that I was also incredibly inspired by the story behind the schools, and the movement to improve education for our kids in general.

These schools are predominantly located in areas where the local public school options have been poor quality. Everyone knows public schools are better in Westchester than they are in the South Bronx. (Isn’t this the reason so many move to the suburbs after having kids?)

I understand that factors outside the school (like the parents and their financial resources) have a lot to do with it, but every kid deserves a world-class education that will prepare them to go to college and succeed in life.

Every child is different and you’ll want to choose the best environment to meet your child’s specific needs. I chose the school I thought was best for my kid. Who would do anything differently?

Charters Work

According to the Charter Schools Institute of SUNY (State University of New York), charter schools were leaders in terms of test scores:

  • 82% of SUNY authorized charter schools outperformed their district of location in mathematics.
  • 76% of SUNY authorized charter schools outperformed their district of location on the English language Arts assessment.

Charter does not necessarily mean good (or bad). I chose a school that had a track record and a history of success. I’m not sure I would have chosen a brand new school, especially because I had other good options, including our zoned public school.

I Support Charter Schools and Educational Choice

After less than a year at my son’s school, I can see that it will have made a hugely positive difference in his life and the trajectory of the lives of his classmates. He is thriving at his school and the amount he has learned this year is absolutely amazing! We really feel like we won the lottery!

Why am I writing this now?

With a new political administration in our city, these awesome schools are at risk. The De Blasio administration is decidedly anti-charter, and has already taken steps to limit expansion and even roll back previously approved schools.

I want every parent to have the same opportunity we are receiving and hopefully show the decision makers how deeply parents care about this issue.

Today, March 4th, 2014 (“March Forth”, get it?), charter school parents, kids, and supporters will be marching in freezing-cold Albany to show their support for this cause. I hope I can help raise awareness of this issue because I believe their success is crucial to the lives of thousands of kids, including my own.

charters work - march fourth at albony

Governor Cuomo speaking to the crowd in Albany


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Sara Stanich