After a survey showed high parental demand for more school choice, the Oklahoma City School board is being urged to expand charter schools.
Parents are asking the board to provide more educational opportunities by expanding the Knowledge Is Power Program (KIPP) charter schools. Matt Frendeway says the American Federation for Children is also encouraging the board to approve the expansion.
"We see KIPP schools as an important part of that menu of choices for parents,” he says. “And that's also why we're supporting and encouraging the city to embrace KIPP schools."
He says KIPP's Oklahoma City middle school boasts 98 percent of eighth-graders receiving proficient or advanced scores in reading; and 92 percent receiving proficient or advanced scores in algebra.
"Nationwide, KIPP schools are often looked at as some of the best performing public charter schools,” he says. “They have a tremendous record. Their founders and those who work there are dedicated to really establishing a solid foundation when they create their schools."
The city's charter school network is looking to launch both a KIPP elementary and high school in the next two years.
The KIPP website boasts of its 20-year track record, 200 schools nationwide, and 80,000 students served. The program's "Five Pillars" - a core set of operating principles - are (1) high expectations, (2) choice and commitment, (3) more time, (4) power to lead, and (5) focus on results.