This week the U.S. Department of Education awarded grants totaling $25 million to charter school networks that have been extremely successful in raising student achievement. The grants went to nine different charter networks across the country, all of which serve mostly low-income students. Arne Duncan made it clear why these charter networks deserved to be recognized when he said:
Several high-quality charter schools across the country are making an amazing difference in our children's lives, especially when charters in inner-city communities are performing as well, if not better, than their counterparts in much wealthier suburbs.
One recipient of the grant money was Breakthrough Charter Schools from Cleveland, Ohio. Breakthrough serves more than 1,400 K-8 students across six schools, of which 95 percent are minority and 80 percent are considered low-income. Despite what some would call challenging conditions, Breakthrough has managed to outperform the city of Cleveland and state average on every single test in every single grade.
Source: Breakthrough Charter Schools
This is quite the accomplishment and one that should be applauded. ?The U.S Department of Education awarded Breakthrough $3,488,060 to open eight new schools and expand three schools that they already have in Cleveland. One Breakthrough school in particular, Citizens Academy, was also recently recognized for their commitment to accelerating student growth and preparing their students for college. Citizens Academy was named a National Blue Ribbon Schools of 2011. They were one of only 304 schools that received the awarded this year.