Demonstrators at a school choice rally held at the Arizona Capitol displayed various signs supporting both charter and district public schools.

Demonstrators at a school choice rally held at the Arizona Capitol displayed various signs supporting both charter and district public schools in Arizona on Friday, Jan. 29, 2016. Photo by Evan Wyloge/Arizona Center for Investigative Reporting

Two decades after Arizona helped pioneer the charter school movement, enrollment data show the schools don’t match the school-age demographics of the state and, in many cases, their neighborhoods. White – and especially Asian – students attend charter schools at a higher rate than Hispanics, who now make up the greatest portion of Arizona’s school-age population.

Hispanic students account for 44 percent of all students in Arizona, but they make up just 36 percent of charter school students. White students, who make up 40 percent of the student population, account for 48 percent of all charter students.

“The mission of public education is to give every child in our state the equal opportunity to excel to the maximum of their capabilities,” said Tim Ogle, executive director of the Arizona School Boards Association. “When you have disparities of opportunity, you are systemically inhibiting some groups over other groups through public policy, and that’s just inherently wrong.”

The Arizona Department of Education hasn’t conducted a formal analysis of the school enrollment demographics, but the agency’s spokesman, Charles Tack, said they’re anecdotally aware of the disparity, and that the data “confirms that there is work to be done.”

Arizona lawmakers established charter schools in the 1990s so that parents could send their children to schools specializing in rigor, the arts or Montessori teaching methods, to provide an education more tailored than what was traditionally available in public schools.

Today, roughly 17 percent of all students in Arizona’s public schools attend a charter – about triple the national average of 5 percent. Only the District of Columbia has a greater portion of charter school students.

Charter schools here receive state funding based on enrollment, and may operate independent of school districts. They’re either run by non profit or for-profit groups. In fiscal year 2014, the state provided $8,041 per student to charter schools, compared to $9,096 per student to district schools. District schools generate additional funding through voter-approved bonds and overrides.

Arizona’s open enrollment law allows parents to send their children to any school they choose – district or charter – even if it’s outside their neighborhood, provided there is room.

The Arizona Center for Investigative Reporting analyzed school enrollment demographics for public schools in Arizona, categorizing each and then comparing it to the demographic data within the surrounding communities and schools within a 10-mile radius. The analysis provides a snapshot of Arizona school demographics from 2014, the most recent statewide data available.

While there are exceptions, when charter schools are compared to their neighborhoods and to other nearby schools, data show that they are more likely to be whiter than the surrounding area, while district schools tend to over-represent Hispanic students.

As a portion of each ethnicity’s school age population, one of every six Hispanic students in Arizona attends a charter school, but for white students, it’s one in every four. Among Asians, it’s one of every three, and for Native Americans it’s one in 10. The trend is more pronounced for charter schools located in more rural communities with fewer school choices, and among specific types of charters.

In both “rigorous” and “progressive” charter schools, more than half of the student population is white, and less than 30 percent is Hispanic. Alternatively, among “at-risk” charter schools, which cater to students at risk of failing out of school, Hispanics make up an overwhelming majority of the students, with white students making up less than 20 percent.

Jonathan Butcher, education director for the Goldwater Institute, said charter schools shouldn’t be criticized for their student demographics because being diverse wasn’t the initial goal.

“Yes, we want (charter schools) to serve diverse populations, but I think it’s unfair to criticize them for not doing something that isn’t part of the main goal that they were set up to do,” Butcher said. “Their goal was to give parents more options and to improve student achievement. That’s what they were set up to do.”

Heritage Academy, a general charter school in downtown Mesa, has operated for more than 20 years, serving students in the East Valley. Its principal, Earl Taylor, said students come from as far as Coolidge and North Phoenix.

That regional focus, Taylor said, complicates the issue of how his charter school’s demographics compare to the community where it’s located. Heritage Academy is 80 percent white and 14 percent Hispanic. But the school- age population around the school is 61 percent Hispanic and 27 percent white. District schools within a 10-mile radius have nearly equal portions of white and Hispanic students.

New School for the Arts and Academics in Tempe also has a student body that’s whiter than the surrounding area. Sixty-nine percent of the school’s students are white and 17 percent are Hispanic. The school is located in a neighborhood that’s only 10 percent white and 67 percent Hispanic. District schools within a 10-mile radius have, on average, a student population that’s 31 percent white and 51 percent Hispanic.

The BASIS charter schools, which consistently rank among the highest-performing public schools in the country, are particularly popular among Asian families. Nearly 28 percent of all BASIS students are Asian, although Asians only make up about 3 percent of the state’s K-12 public school students.

BASIS Chandler has the greatest percentage of Asian students of any BASIS school. Sixty-eight percent of the school’s population – 497 out of 731 students – are Asian, though the surrounding neighborhood is only 5 percent Asian. Overall, the combined student population at the BASIS schools is 57 percent white and 11 percent Hispanic.

BASIS representatives didn’t respond to repeated requests for comment, but said in an email that BASIS is “incredibly proud of the diverse nature” of its student population.

Andrew Morrill, president of the Arizona Education Association, said public schools have historically had a strong connection to the community in which they’re located and that it’s difficult for charter schools to build that same connection when they don’t serve the students from around the area.

“When you have schools that may encourage folks of some ethnicities but not necessarily the ones in those communities, how connected is that school to the local neighborhood?” Morrill said. “What really is that charter school then to the local community?”

(85) comments

ChrisTine58

Such events are very useful in schools and collegs. They help to gather students and active enthusiasts together and join their power to be noticed and heard. I often create different events in my college - I'm an active person. As a student, I know how complicated academic process can be when you deal with social work. When I have many college papers and many deadlines, I prefer to apply to academic writing services in UK for a qualified essay writing help. It helps me to deal with everything on time and avoid stress and bad mood.

LisaRichards

I still don't understand how this is possible when Phoenix is really a diverse city. The demographics show ( http://www.towncharts.com/Arizona/Demographics/Phoenix-city-AZ-Demographics-data.html ) that over 40% of people in Arizona are Hispanic. There is also a lot of Asians, Europeans... Can someone explain why we don't have diversity in schools when we surely have it in the city?

Blake Walker

Thanks for taking the time to discuss this, I feel strongly about it and love learning more on this topic. If possible, as you gain expertise, would you mind updating your blog with extra information? It is extremely helpful for me. buyrealtwitterfollowerscheapreview.weebly.com

Blake Walker

Thanks for another excellent post. Where else could anybody get that type of info in such an ideal way of writing? In my opinion, my seeking has ended now. bluehost review

Blake Walker

You made such an interesting piece to read, giving every subject enlightenment for us to gain knowledge. Thanks for sharing the such information with us to read this... http://kratomfor.sale/

Blake Walker

I admire this article for the well-researched content and excellent wording. I got so involved in this material that I couldn’t stop reading. I am impressed with your work and skill. Thank you so much. mobility scooters price

leoandrew

I have seen some great stuff here. Worth bookmarking for revisiting. I surprise how much effort you put to create such a great informative website. Your work is truly appreciated around the clock and the globe. https://mycanadianpharmacyteam.com

leoandrew

Best work you have done, this online website is cool with great facts and looks. I have stopped at this blog after viewing the excellent content. I will be back for more qualitative work. سازه ال اس اف

leoandrew

I visit your blog regularly and recommend it to all of those who wanted to enhance their knowledge with ease. The style of writing is excellent and also the content is top-notch. Thanks for that shrewdness you provide the readers! best gaming laptop brands

leoandrew

Hi there! Nice material, do keep me posted when you post something like this again! I will visit this blog leaps and bounds for more quality posts like it. Thanks... Eric Amidi

leoandrew

Nice blog, I will keep visiting this blog very often. departamentos en cancun

leoandrew

I am incapable of reading articles online very often, but I’m happy I did today. It is very well written, and your points are well-expressed. I request you warmly, please, don’t ever stop writing. 50 social book marking karo

Blake Walker

This article was written by a real thinking writer without a doubt. I agree many of the with the solid points made by the writer. I’ll be back day in and day for further new updates. high quality logo design

leoandrew

i love reading this article so beautiful!!great job! Citation Flow Blog Comments

Blake Walker

Pretty good post. I just stumbled upon your blog and wanted to say that I have really enjoyed reading your blog posts. Any way I'll be subscribing to your feed and I hope you post again soon. Big thanks for the useful info. forex demo

Blake Walker

Positive site, where did u come up with the information on this posting?I have read a few of the articles on your website now, and I really like your style. Thanks a million and please keep up the effective work. Droshipping guide

Blake Walker

It is a good site post without fail. Not too many people would actually, the way you just did. I am impressed that there is so much information about this subject that has been uncovered and you’ve defeated yourself this time, with so much quality. Good Works! daytona beach real estate photography

asad21

i love reading this article so beautiful!!great job! daily dofollow blog commenting

Blake Walker

This is right the info I am exploring omnipresent. Acknowledges for your blog, I legitimate attest your blog. This is a stunning blog. concrete floor staining miami

Blake Walker

I am happy to find this post Very useful for me, as it contains lot of information. I Always prefer to read The Quality and glad I found this thing in you post. Thanks Nintendo 3Ds Emulator

Blake Walker

What a thrilling post, you have pointed out some excellent points, I as well believe this is a superb website. I have planned to visit it again and again. Nintendo 3Ds Emulator

asad21

I found that site very usefull and this survey is very cirious, I ' ve never seen a blog that demand a survey for this actions, very curious... buy real degree

CalebPena

Really a great addition. I have read this marvelous post. Thanks for sharing information about it. I really like that. Thanks so lot for your convene. Celebrity Christmas Strictly Come Dancing

CalebPena

Nice post! This is a very nice blog that I will definitively come back to more times this year! Thanks for informative post. Buy Phentermine Online

CalebPena

Nice post! This is a very nice blog that I will definitively come back to more times this year! Thanks for informative post. male extra

adammeyer

That'sthe reason advertising and marketing that you suitable homework in advance of crafting. It is also possible to jot down improved posting with this. Jual MSI gaming

CalebPena

I am jovial you take pride in what you write. It makes you stand way out from many other writers that can not push high-quality content like you. offshore web hosting

adammeyer

That appears to be absolutely good. These teeny main features are intended acquiring great deal of qualifications skills. Now i am attracted to the product loads. google 1st page seo

jonson

I am unable to read articles online very often, but I’m glad I did today. This is very well written and your points are well-expressed. Please, don’t ever stop writing. What is FUPA

jonson

This article was written by a real thinking writer without a doubt. I agree many of the with the solid points made by the writer. I’ll be back day in and day for further new updates. steroids for sale

jonson

Thanks for sharing this information. I really like your blog post very much. You have really shared a informative and interesting blog post with people.. migliori antivirus a pagamento

CalebPena

We are really grateful for your blog post. You will find a lot of approaches after visiting your post. I was exactly searching for. Thanks for such post and please keep it up. Great work. best modular snowmobile helmets

CalebPena

Good post but I was wondering if you could write a litte more on this subject? I’d be very thankful if you could elaborate a little bit further. Appreciate it! Askwomens

jonson

I found your this post while searching for information about blog-related research ... It's a good post .. keep posting and updating information. Dr Oz Garcinia Cambogi

jonson

I learn some new stuff from it too, thanks for sharing your information. Phen24 Australia

Lucas Atkinson

Initial You got a awesome blog .I determination be involved in plus uniform minutes. i view you got truly very functional matters , i determination be always checking your blog blesss. painting contractors Edmonton

CalebPena

Wow! Such an amazing and helpful post this is. I really really love it. It's so good and so awesome. I am just amazed. I hope that you continue to do your work like this in the future also Male Extra

asad21

There are several dissertation internet sites on-line because you get evidently reported as part of your web site. Ristrutturazioni a camaiore

John cena

Really I enjoy your site with effective and useful information. It is included very nice post with a lot of our resources.thanks for share. i enjoy this post. What is Neuroplasticity

jonson

Fabulous post, you have denoted out some fantastic points, I likewise think this s a very wonderful website. I will visit again for more quality contents and also, recommend this site to all. Thanks. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy

jonson

An fascinating discussion is value comment. I think that it is best to write extra on this matter, it won’t be a taboo topic however generally people are not enough to talk on such topics. To the next. Cheers dianabol cycle

John cena

I think this is an informative post and it is very useful and knowledgeable. therefore, I would like to thank you for the efforts you have made in writing this article. Fit or Fitness?

jonson

Wonderful blog! I found it while surfing around on Yahoo News. Do you have any suggestions on how to get listed in Yahoo News? I’ve been trying for a while but I never seem to get there! Appreciate it. SizeGenetics

masterseo

I learn some new stuff from it too, thanks for sharing your information. Minicab to Airport

mupapa

You have a good point here!I totally agree with what you have said!!Thanks for sharing your views...hope more people will read this article!!!
FuturoCoin Blockchain

masterseo

I learn some new stuff from it too, thanks for sharing your information. Taxi Reading

jonson

Pretty good post. I just stumbled upon your blog and wanted to say that I have really enjoyed reading your blog posts. Any way I'll be subscribing to your feed and I hope you post again soon. Big thanks for the useful info. best weight loss supplement

jonson

Thank you so much for the post you do. I like your post and all you share with us is up to date and quite informative, i would like to bookmark the page so i can come here again to read you, as you have done a wonderful job. Forskolin 125

CalebPena

Yes i am totally agreed with this article and i just want say that this article is very nice and very informative article.I will make sure to be reading your blog more. You made a good point but I can't help but wonder, what about the other side? !!!!!!THANKS!!!!!! how to make a girl squirt

CalebPena

Great post, you have pointed out some fantastic points , I likewise think this s a very wonderful website. http://pbn-shop.de/

masterseo

This blog website is pretty cool! How was it made ! precio detective privado Madrid

CalebPena

I definitely enjoying every little bit of it. It is a great website and nice share. I want to thank you. Good job! You guys do a great blog, and have some great contents. Keep up the good work. astaxanthin

CalebPena

thanks for the tips and information..i really appreciate it.. austin eye care

jonson

Thank you for another great article. Where else could anyone get that kind of information in such a perfect way of writing? I have a presentation next week, and I am on the look for such information. Professional Logo Design

jonson

I high appreciate this post. It’s hard to find the good from the bad sometimes, but I think you’ve nailed it! would you mind updating your blog with more information? breast actives

CalebPena

Thanks for posting this info. I just want to let you know that I just check out your site and I find it very interesting and informative. I can't wait to read lots of your posts. daftar judi baccarat

jonson

I felt very happy while reading this site. This was really very informative site for me. I really liked it. This was really a cordial post. Thanks a lot!. Pool Companies in Dubai

CalebPena

This is such a great resource that you are providing and you give it away for free. I love seeing blog that understand the value of providing a quality resource for free. comanda mancare in timisoara

CalebPena

The article looks magnificent, but it would be beneficial if you can share more about the suchlike subjects in the future. Keep posting. diggy's adventure hack

CalebPena

Pretty good post. I just stumbled upon your blog and wanted to say that I have really enjoyed reading your blog posts. Any way I'll be subscribing to your feed and I hope you post again soon. Big thanks for the useful info. uvo corp feedback

jonson

Impressive web site, Distinguished feedback that I can tackle. Im moving forward and may apply to my current job as a pet sitter, which is very enjoyable, but I need to additional expand. Regards. sideline camera

masterseo

I'm glad I found this web site, I couldn't find any knowledge on this matter prior to.Also operate a site and if you are ever interested in doing some visitor writing for me if possible feel free to let me know, im always look for people to check out my web site. seeking face not hands

John cena

I am interested in such topics so I will address page where it is cool described. ark of the covenant today

John cena

This is very interesting content! I have thoroughly enjoyed reading your points and have come to the conclusion that you are right about many of them. You are great. cty san xuat tvc quang cao

John cena

Thank you for the update, very nice site.. theporndude

FARHANMALIK

I have recently started a blog. the info you provide on this site has helped me greatly. Thanks for all of your time & work.
UP Result 2018

AAKSEO

Ipe is regarded around the world as the best wood that can be used for decking. The wood proounced E-pay, comes from brazil and lasts over 70 years without a single treatment. It also has a class A fire rating which makes it great for house siding and decking. fencing

AAKSEO

Based in Manchester, we measure, supply and install window plantation shutters across the north west of the UK Plantation shutters Cheshire

AAKSEO

Ghosts and ghost towns. The Civil War and Samurai. Oliver Phipps' work includes a broad spectrum of exciting tales and adventures. From true ghost stories to Flamenco dancing, there is something for almost everyone.

AAKSEO

I have express two or three the articles on your website now, and I really like your style of blogging. I added it to my most cherished's blog website page list and will return soon… Flavoured E liquids

ferrari

Just like the old saying goes, within the pro’s head there are few options, however , for a person with the beginner’s brain, the world is open up.best garrys mod games

ferrari

Excellent .. Amazing .. I’ll bookmark your blog and take the feeds also…I’m happy to find so many useful info here in the post. we need work out more techniques in this regard. thanks for sharing.See More

ferrari

I suppose this is a really true article. you are making this data exciting and tasty. You provide readers a lot to consider and that i respect that sort of writing.free garrys mod

zovikana

I really impressed after read this because of some quality work and informative thoughts . I just wanna say thanks for the writer and wish you all the best for coming!.
https://goo.gl/ZZfdx4

zovikana

Very good points you wrote here..Great stuff...I think you've made some truly interesting points.Keep up the good work.
dorukcatering.web.tr

ferrari

The business identities are nowadays flocking to get websites published, registered and hosted on the internet. Seeing to the exponential demand, the marker is witnessing mushrooming of a number of website design and development companies.Men shoes in pakistan

Sohailkhatri

Your views are in accordance with my own for the most part. This is great content for your readers.You make so many great points here that I read your article a couple of times. design of reinforced concrete 10th edition

John cena

Thank you so much as you have been willing to share information with us. We will forever admire all you have done here because you have made my work as easy as ABC. Judi Online Poker Domino 99 dan Agen Bola Resmi Indonesia

Faheem

I propose merely very good along with reputable data, consequently visualize it: Solution Manual for Statistics Informed Decisions Using Data 5th Edition by Sullivan

Sohailkhatri

Very good written article. It will be supportive to anyone who utilizes it, including me. Keep doing what you are doing – can’r wait to read more posts. Test Bank for Criminology Connecting Theory Research and Practice 1st Edition by Chambliss

daniellesullivan

When my partner and i started to be on your own web site while wearing distinct consideration effortlessly some touch submits. Attractive technique for long term, I will be book-marking at this time have got designs attain rises proper upwards. 1xbet

John cena

If more people that write articles really concerned themselves with writing great content like you, more readers would be interested in their writings. Thank you for caring about your content. security company hemel hempstead

halinmiz

Because of this it will be significantly better which you could suitable studies just before manufacturing. You'll be able to create significantly greater guide that way. https://lazypal.com/listings/5050-dufferin-street-213-north-york-on-m3h-5t5-ross-taylor-associates/

halinmiz

This appears undeniably remarkable. All of these very small facts are constructed choosing large selection about qualifying measures know-how. Document gift a good deal quite a lot. https://themobileherald.com/ross-taylor-announces-the-launch-of-his-teams-new-complimentary-mortgage-renewal-assessment/251852/

daniellesullivan

You will find dissertation online sites via internet settle purchase not surprisingly well-known while in the web pages. http://www.myvidster.com/video/143046761/Why_Use_Ross

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
PLEASE TURN OFF YOUR CAPS LOCK.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.