2022 Portrait of the Movement
Charters at 30: Reimagining Public Education


In celebration of the 30th anniversary of California's Charter Schools Act, CCSA explores how charter public schools are reimagining public education in ways that benefit California students. Download the Charters at 30 - Reimagining Public Education report today!

We found that in 2020-21, California’s 1,294 charter public schools are reimagining instruction, redefining college and career readiness, and rethinking what is possible for more than 700,000 students. 

Part 1: Reimagining Instruction


Specialized Models

California charter public schools that were surveyed have at least one pedagogical or content specialization which improves students’ attitudes toward school, problem-solving abilities, and performance.


Pedagogical Ingenuity

Most charter public schools we surveyed adhere to eight school models: college ready, progressive, personalized, online, career-focused, military, classical, and gifted and talented education (GATE).



Based on CCSA’s analysis, California charter public schools are preparing students for college by focusing content in the areas of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM), global studies, and the arts.

Part 2: Redefining College and Career Readiness


Going Beyond Summative Assessments

We analyze two charter public schools that are going beyond the standards and thinking deeply about other measures contribute to student success.


Letting Kids Experience Career Options

Learn about one charter public school that is leading the way in giving students the time to explore and experience career options starting in middle school.


Leveraging Qualitative Alumni Data

Understand how charter public schools are using rich qualitative data from alumni on what helped them in college and how they could have been better prepared.

Part 3: Reimagining What Is Possible


New Student-Level Growth Data

New state education data offers a more complete picture of students’ academic proficiency and progress than ever before. 


"Rising Star" Charter Public Schools

"Rising Stars" are schools with high average growth among all students and/or historically underserved subgroups in ELA and math.


What Can We Learn From "Rising Stars"

Take a look at the top charter public schools in California that are consistently gaining academic ground.