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Charter School Board Characteristics, Composition and Practices and Charter School Outcomes

Title: Charter School Board Characteristics, Composition and Practices and Charter School Outcomes: An Organizational Effectiveness Approach to Evaluating and Understanding Charter Schools.
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Name(s): Frazier, Bernita Maria, author
Schrader, Linda, professor co-directing dissertation
Driscoll, Marcy, professor co-directing dissertation
Berry, Francis, university representative
Turner, Jeanine, committee member
Department of Educational Psychology and Learning Systems, degree granting department
Florida State University, degree granting institution
Type of Resource: text
Genre: Text
Issuance: monographic
Date Issued: 2011
Publisher: Florida State University
Place of Publication: Tallahassee, Florida
Physical Form: computer
online resource
Extent: 1 online resource
Language(s): English
Abstract/Description: Charter schools are "autonomous, publicly funded entities that operate on the basis of a contract between the individual and/or group (e.g., teachers, parents, others) which organizes the school and a sponsor (typically local or state education boards or districts)" (Lavine, 1994, p. 8). Charter schools are responsible to sponsors for their performance, and organizers are held accountable if the specified outcomes are not achieved. However, charter school board accountability continues to be a problem in charter schools in part because sponsors and boards are making up the rules as they go along. Since their inception in 1991, many charter schools have closed due to administrative and fiscal oversights (Center for Education Reform, 2002). These oversights have focused attention on the capacity of charter school boards to successfully govern their schools. This focus is important because boards have been generally overlooked in charter school research. The primary focus of charter school research over the years has been on the academic achievement of students attending charter schools. However, research indicates charter school students perform no better academically than their public school counterparts (Nelson, Rosenberg & Van Meter, 2004). The acute attention on academic achievement in charter schools misses an opportunity to examine charter school inputs and processes that produce outcomes. As nonprofit organizations, charter school boards are ultimately responsible for outcomes, and as an important input into charter schools, new attention to who they are and what they do is both important and timely. This research describes the characteristics, composition and practices of charter school boards. It also examines the relationships among the characteristics, composition, and practices of charter school boards of directors and the general success of charter schools achieving academic performance. The findings reveal that age and professional diversity of charter school board members positively impact charter schools' effectiveness achieving academic outcomes. However, the communication skills of charter school boards are poor. Charter school boards are also participating in activities and practices, such as education and training and the use of agendas and committees, generally associated with effective board governance. Overall, examining charter school boards provides much needed insight into charter school governance and presents an opportunity to improve charter school accountability.
Identifier: FSU_migr_etd-4842 (IID)
Submitted Note: A Dissertation submitted to the Department of Educational Psychology and Learning Systems in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy.
Degree Awarded: Fall Semester 2011.
Date of Defense: August 26, 2011.
Keywords: charter school boards, charter schools, evaluation, organizational theory, resource dependency
Bibliography Note: Includes bibliographical references.
Advisory Committee: Linda Schrader, Professor Co-Directing Dissertation; Marcy Driscoll, Professor Co-Directing Dissertation; Francis Berry, University Representative; Jeanine Turner, Committee Member.
Subject(s): Educational psychology
Persistent Link to This Record: http://purl.flvc.org/fsu/fd/FSU_migr_etd-4842
Owner Institution: FSU

Choose the citation style.
Frazier, B. M. (2011). Charter School Board Characteristics, Composition and Practices and Charter School Outcomes: An Organizational Effectiveness Approach to Evaluating and Understanding Charter Schools. Retrieved from http://purl.flvc.org/fsu/fd/FSU_migr_etd-4842