Online charter schools are California’s fasting growing education sector.

This report offers the first comprehensive assessment of the state’s online (“nonclassroom-based”) charter schools.

What we found

  • California is overpaying for nonclassroom-based charter schools by over $600 million per year.
  • Californians pay approximately $10,300 for every student who attends one of Pearson’s Connections Academy online charter schools. Yet, the tuition for enrolling in the private Pearson Online Academy is about half of that.
  • The educational outcomes of online charter schools are significantly below the state average, by every measure.
  • Online charter schools have expanded to the point that in most counties, there are at least six different online charter schools to choose from.

What people are saying

“I have reviewed the methodology of this report and it is sound. The report’s findings regarding the subpar educational performance of online charter schools are in line with the national research. It is critical that policymakers focus on these facts when crafting new legislation governing charter schools.”

Gary Miron, professor of educational leadership, research and technology at Western Michigan University

In the press

Report: California ‘wasting’ millions of dollars funding online charter schools
The Washington Post
February 2, 2021 by Valerie Strauss

Report: California Wastes $600 Million Per Year on Cyberschools
Forbes
February 6, 2021 by Peter Greene

Share the report

New Report: California is wasting over $600 million a year on nonclassroom-based charter schools, including online charter schools run by for-profit corporations like K12 Inc. and Pearson. Learn more about @pubinterest’s report at costlyfailure.org

A new report by @pubinterest has revealed that California is overpaying for nonclassroom-based charter schools (including online charter schools run by for-profit corporations) to the tune over $600 million a year. See more at: costlyfailure.org

Did you know? California is wasting $600 million a year on nonclassroom-based charter schools. Online charter schools in particular perform significantly below state educational averages. And there are too many of them across the state. Learn more at: costlyfailure.org

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