The NJ Spotlight Roundtable Series: Charter School Policy and Accountability

Within two years, New Jersey is expected to be home to more than 100 charter schools. That makes this an ideal time to wrestle with the questions that have surrounded charters from their inception. To do just that, NJ Spotlight brought together charter school authorities from the public and private sectors, for a moderated discussion that explored the essential issues facing these entities.

Panelists: Acting Commissioner of Education Chris Cerf; NJ State Assemblywoman Mila M. Jasey; Carly Bolger, Director, Office of Charter Schools, NJ Department of Education; Katrina Bulkley, Montclair State University professor and charter school expert; Julia Sass Rubin, Save Our Schools NJ; Karen Thomas, CEO of Marion P. Thomas Charter School, Newark

Chapter 1: Introductory Comments
Charter schools are a complex, controversial subject. Any meaningful discussion of charters must touch upon three key topics: authorization, funding, and enrollment.

Chapter 2: Authorizing Charter Schools
Currently, only the Department of Education can authorize charter schools, but as the number of schools climbs, some argue that more authorizers must be set up to review, approve, oversee and renew charters.

Chapter 3: Funding Charter Schools
Essentially, public schools subsidize the charters in their local districts, a situation that has led to tensions on both sides of the relationship.

Chapter 4: Enrollment and Q&A Session
Do charter schools underserve children with special needs? Are they more selective about which students they retain and which they release?


DVDs and digital downloads of the NJ Spotlight Roundtable Series can be purchased here.