The Brookings Institute has published interesting research regarding Arizona Charter Schools(click link above to access the article). It finds that the overall effect that a charter school has on a child's education is neutral. This is because there are many GREAT charter schools, but also many poor ones. Additionally, they found that those charter schools which push "academic rigor" in their classrooms are, in fact, excelling.
This research backs up our philosophy and should be a sobering dose of reality to parents who believe that all charter schools promote academic success. When choosing a school, even if it is a charter school, please do your research into the past academic performance of those schools that you are considering - and encourage your friends and family to do the same. The final paragraph of the article sums it up like this:
"The mediocre performance of Arizona’s charter sector as a whole should not overshadow the impressive work being done in some individual schools. The same should be said for the traditional sector, in which there is also substantial, albeit less, variation in quality. But part of what makes the charter idea compelling is that it provides opportunities for schools to innovate, while not tolerating persistent failure. For this ideal to be realized, policies that drive continuous improvement of the sector over time need to be in place."