Evaluation of Scaling the New Orleans Charter Restart Model:

Our Research Questions

8. Did the Charter Restart Model’s installation result in positive impact for student learning?
The CRM’s ultimate goal was to increase school quality. Did academic performance improve for students attending CRM schools?
The success of Scaling the New Orleans Charter Restart Model ultimately rests on whether or not the CRM’s installation resulted in better learning outcomes for students. Overall, 13 of 19 CRM schools for which we have tested grades outperformed their Closing schools, meaning that 13 of 19 schools produced better results for students than the schools they replaced. Ten of these schools were in New Orleans; three were in Tennessee.

However, the standard for success in the CRM was quite intentionally not incremental improvement over Closing schools, but rather high performance as defined by top 33% (New Orleans) or top 25% (Tennessee) performance. Here, we find that only five New Orleans CRM schools perform in the top third of New Orleans schools in one subject or the other – no schools achieve top third in both math and reading. In Tennessee, no CRM schools achieve performance in the top quarter statewide – indeed, only two Tennessee schools show any significantly positive learning gains for their students.

Aggregate student impact findings, however, mask interesting and important results that emerge once we begin to dig more deeply. Further, by applying the qualitative findings of the Implementation study to considerations of the Student Impact study, we can understand more deeply how the CRM did and did not achieve its various goals. Toward that end, we tested numerous operational characteristics of the CRM schools in order to identify drivers of school success or failure.

To explore the full compendium of Student Impact findings, click here.