The eminent researcher Gene Glass notes on his blog that the purpose of charter schools, when they were first launched, was to enroll the students with the highest needs. Now, ironically, those are the students likeliest to be avoided by most charter schools.


He writes:


The great irony is that the charter school movement was launched decades ago as a solution to the “problem” that special needs students were not being adequately served by the traditional public schools. Charter schools would specialize in serving the needs of that neglected population — or so the story went. How ironic, then, that the modern charter school movement creams the top performing, largely white middle class, sector of the public school population and leaves the poor, the needy, and the minorities back in the traditional public schools.


He gives citations to prove his point.


Glass adds:


And now, irony climbs atop irony. Charter schools that have creamed high scoring students from the public schools are labeling high percentages of the students “autistic” to increase their state allotment from under $10,000 per regular student to about $20,000 per “autistic” student. And then they report no expenditures for special programs.