Identifying Indicators of Distress in Charter Schools labels and categorizes the indicators of distress that authorizers encounter as a school’s quality begins to decline. This report can help authorizers and other charter sector stakeholders recognize signs of distress in schools in their unique contexts and take action towards the goal of school improvement.
The report is critical reading for various charter sector stakeholders:
- State entities and authorizers can use the report to better understand authorizers’ evolving roles, especially related to school improvement.
- Charter school developers and leaders and CMOs can utilize the report to help assess quality and health and drive improvement in schools in distress.
- Charter support organizations can leverage the report to help facilitate continual support throughout the school lifecycle.
Identifying Indicators of Distress in Charter Schools is the product of extensive qualitative research and formal interviews with nine authorizers across policy contexts from a variety of authorizing entities. It is the first in a multi-part series published by the National Charter School Resource Center.
To further explore this research, view the following supporting tools.
- Identifying Indicators of Distress in Charter Schools, Part 2: The Roles and Perspectives of Charter School Leaders and Board Members, which examines the role of administrators and boards in recognizing and responding to the indicators.
- Identifying Indicators of Distress in Charter Schools: Tools to Support Authorizer Data Collection, a toolkit to help authorizers identify indicators of distress, audit their current data collection methods for evaluating indicators of distress, and assess whether and to what extent the schools in their portfolio exhibit the indicators.
- NCSRC's Indicators of Distress Reflection Tool, which can help authorizers assess if a school is in distress by leveraging the early indicators described in the report. (This tool is included in the above toolkit but available here for ease of access.)
These NCSRC webinar recordings features the research authors and panelists discussing implications and use of the Indicators of Distress research:
- The Death Spiral: Identifying Early Indicators of Distress in Charter Schools (A Conversation with Authorizers)
- Risk in Charter School Lending: Indicators of Distress and the Charter School Growth Fund’s Approach to Risk Management
- Indicators of Distress and What They Mean in the Charter Sector: A Webinar for Charter Sector Stakeholders Introducing New Research Related to the Early Indicators of Distress
- Indicators of Distress and What They Mean in the Charter Sector: A Workshop for School Leaders on Using the Early Indicators of Distress
- Identifying Distress in Charter Schools: A Workshop for Authorizers and State Departments of Education