Best Practices in Chartered Public Schools

Best Practices in Chartered Public Schools

Discussion with Commissioner Frank Edelblut and Dr. Cara Stillings Candal

Thursday, November 7, 2019

Nackey Loeb School in Manchester, NH

Doors open at 5:30pm

Presentation at 6:00pm

Book sale and signing follows


Join School Choice for NH and the Pioneer Institute for a discussion about charter school best practices and NH’s chartered public schools with guest speakers Commissioner Frank Edelblut and Dr. Cara Stillings Candal!

The presentation will be held on Thursday, November 7th beginning at 6:00pm, doors open at 5:30pm. At the end of the discussion, Dr. Candal will sign her latest book, “The Fight for the Best Charter Public Schools in the Nation.” Copies will be sold on-site for $10.

Tickets are free, but advanced registration is required as seating is limited to 80 people. Reserve your seat here.

Commissioner Edelblut will discuss the state of NH’s chartered public schools and a grant recently awarded by the federal government. Dr. Candal will discuss best practices in charter schools and how they can lift up students to success.


About our guest speakers

Frank Edelblut was sworn in as the commissioner of the NH Department of Education on February 16, 2017. As commissioner, he is responsible for the organizational goals of the department and represents the public interest in the administration of the functions of the department of education. The commissioner is responsible to the Governor, the General Court, and the public for such administration. Mr. Edelblut has a vision to make education accessible to everyone. “The equity gap is too large and it has persisted for too long. Everything needs to be on the table as we consider how to improve educational outcomes for all students.”

Cara Stillings Candal, Ed.D., is an education policy expert and Senior Fellow at Pioneer Institute. She was formerly a Senior Fellow with the Center for Education Reform and research assistant professor at the Boston University School of Education. She was a founding team member of the National Academy of Advanced Teacher Education (NAATE) and has an extensive background in national and international education policy and teacher training. Dr. Candal is the author/editor of numerous articles and several books about charter schools and other alternatives to traditional school options, including the latest Pioneer Institute book, “The Fight for the Best Charter Public Schools in the Nation.”


About “The Fight for the Best Charter Public Schools in the Nation”

Over two decades ago, Massachusetts introduced its first charter public schools, planting seeds that would grow some of the highest performing public schools in the nation. No one could have known then how successful this experiment in education reform would be—nor how controversial. The Fight for the Best Charter Public Schools in the Nation draws on data and interviews with education policymakers and school leaders to trace the history of charter schools and document the stellar academic outcomes that they help students achieve. The book includes a wealth of timely information to demonstrate that, contrary to critics’ false claims, charters in the Commonwealth serve more low-income students and students of color than district schools. They are also serving increasingly large populations of English language learners and students with disabilities. In Boston, charters are closing race- and income-based achievement gaps faster and better than almost any other group of schools in the nation.

Massachusetts offers several lessons—good and bad—for states with weaker charter sectors, and the book illustrates the challenges that these schools continue to face. The author makes the case that the same political, regulatory, and structural conditions that have produced the state’s incredibly high-performing charter sector have also prevented it from expanding. Despite strong demand in the state’s urban districts, charter politics in Massachusetts are deeply divisive, especially in the aftermath of a 2016 state wide referendum rejecting a charter cap lift. This book contains several recommendations for reinvigorating the public and political appetites for these very effective schools, from funding reforms and state advocacy in rural and suburban districts, to a more friendly environment so charters can innovate and thrive.