Some 232 proposed charter schools in Texas were awarded grants from the U.S. Department of Education’s Charter Schools Program between 2006-2014. At least 72 (or 31 percent) of those charters have been closed or never opened at all, according to a new report by the Network for Public Education. The calculated waste of taxpayers’ money was $23,941,606.
Nationally, the report, Still Asleep at the Wheel, determined that 1,779 charters awarded grants during the same time period (or 37 percent of the total) have been closed or never opened for a waste of $504,517,371 of public funding.
“The staggering amount spent on schools that have closed or never opened, as well as those that have engaged in fraud, is nothing short of a national scandal,” the report states. “As public dollars are diverted from public schools, the students who attend their neighborhood schools have fewer resources. It is time to put on the brakes and chart a new course.”
The report recommended that, ultimately, the Charter Schools Program be ended and that charter schools continue to receive federal support only through other funding streams such as Title I and IDEA – “programs that benefit students, not charter school entrepreneurs.”
Read more about the report here. To learn more about the Texas portion of the study, click on TX on the map or hover over it for the quick facts.