Friday, May 1, 2009

Isakson Praises Work of Charter SchoolsPromotes National Charter Schools Week May 3 – 9

U.S. Senator Johnny Isakson, R-Ga., today praised the work of Georgia’s charter schools as National Charter School Week is recognized May 3 through 9, 2009.

Charter schools are tuition-free public schools that are open to all students. Educators, community leaders, business people and parents who start charter schools select the curriculum, philosophies and emphases of the schools, such as a back-to-basics foundation, technology focus or school-to-work approach. The start-up nature of many charter schools means they typically operate with strong community support and involvement while seeking to provide teachers with a positive teaching environment.

“I am proud once again to lend my support to the Georgia Charter Schools Association and National Charter Schools Week,” said Isakson. “Charter schools encourage parents and families to take an active role in choosing the right learning environment to encourage success for our youth.”

Due to the demand for more school choice, the number of charter schools in Georgia has climbed steadily since the first three schools opened in 1995. Today, 113 charter schools currently serve over 39,000 students across Georgia. These charter schools continue to achieve at high levels with regards to percentage of schools making AYP and graduation rates. Isakson was Chairman of the Georgia Board of Education from 1996 to 1999, and helped draft the federal No Child Left Behind law as a member of the U.S. House. In the Senate, Isakson serves on the Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions.

“The Georgia Charter Schools Association is an important partner for me in order to do everything I can on a national level to support charter schools,” said Isakson. “Charter schools play a significant role in quality choice in public education.”

The independence of charter schools allows them to employ innovative educational practices that help boost academic achievement. Charter schools now serve nearly 1.4 million students in over 4,600 schools across the nation.
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