This is part 2 of Stephen Dyer’s series called “Charters Just Don’t Work.”

In this post, Dyer examines the excuses that charters offer for their poor performance relative to district public schools.

For example,

Claim: Charter schools struggle because their populations are so much more challenging than districts’.

Fact: While charter schools do have higher percentages of students in poverty and minorities, they have smaller percentages of special education children.

But here’s the deal: Charters do worse on the report cards than districts with greater challenges. So that means that while charters’ poor performance compared with districts overall can perhaps be explained by more challenging populations, districts with greater challenges are doing better. So charters are not, on the whole, doing a better job serving our state’s most challenging students than districts with more challenges than the charter faces.

There are other excuses, but as Dyer says, they don’t hold water.