Charter Schools and Race: A Lost Opportunity for Integrated Education

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Abstract

Segregation patterns in the nation's charter schools are studied. After reviewing state charter legislation that directly addresses issues of racial and ethnic balance of student enrollment, we briefly examine the racial composition and segregation of the charter school population nationally. School-level analyses, aggregated by state constitute the primary method of studying segregation in charter schools. First, we look at racial composition and segregation of charter schools by state. Then, we consider the differences in segregation between non-charter public schools (or simply "public schools" for convenience) and charter schools, as well as segregation within the charter school sector. We conclude with a discussion of the article's findings and recommendations to promote further racial equity in this growing sector of public schools.

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How to Cite
Frankenberg, E., & Lee, C. (2003). Charter Schools and Race: A Lost Opportunity for Integrated Education. Education Policy Analysis Archives, 11, 32. https://doi.org/10.14507/epaa.v11n32.2003
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Articles
Author Biographies

Erica Frankenberg, Harvard University

Erica Frankenberg is a Research Assistant at The Civil Rights Project and doctoral student at the Harvard Graduate School of Education. She received her Masters in Education with a concentration in Administration, Planning, and Social Policy from the Harvard Graduate School of Education. Ms. Frankenberg has also worked with a non-profit educational foundation in Alabama. She earned a B.A. in Educational Policy from Dartmouth College where she received high honors for her senior thesis regarding the end of court-mandated desegregation in Mobile, Alabama. Ms. Frankenberg's research interest in school desegregation stems from her experience as a student in desegregated public schools. She presented, "The Impact of School Segregation on Residential Housing Patterns: Mobile, AL and Charlotte, NC," at the Resegregation of Southern Schools conference in August 2002. She is also co-author of "Race in American Public Schools: Rapidly Resegregating School Districts," (with C. Lee) published in 2002 and "A Multriacial Society with Segregated Schools: Are We Losting the Dream?" (with C. Lee and G. Orfield) in 2003 by The Civil Rights Project.

Chungmei Lee, Harvard University

Chungmei Lee is a Research Associate at The Civil Rights Project. She received her Masters in Administration, planning, and Social Policy from the Harvard Graduate School of Education. Prior to joining the Project, she worked with Harvard's Programs for Professional Education and helped train education leaders around the world in Education Management Information System (EMIS). At PPE, she also worked on issues relating to the professional development of teachers. As an independent consultant for the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER), she examined issues such as the financing of higher education and its impact on middle-income and low-income students' access to higher education. Before coming to Harvard, Ms. Lee was a high school history teacher in a Nicaraguan international school. She holds a B.A. in history from Dartmouth College. She was born in Taiwan and lived in Honduras for many years. She is also co-author of "Race in American Public Schools: Rapidly Resegregating School Districts," (with E. Frankenberg) published in 2002 and "A Multriacial Society with Segregated Schools: Are We Losting the Dream?" (with E. Frankenberg and G. Orfield) in 2003 by The Civil Rights Project.