School Choice Score: 0%
The state permits parents some choices among traditional public schools. Parents may choose from any school within their district, but to move from one district to another requires participating districts to voluntary agree to such transfers.
Charter Schools Score: 85%
California has a relatively strong charter school law. Schools may receive blanket waivers from various regulations, including the freedom of teachers to not belong to a union. Currently only local or county school boards and the state board in very specific situations can authorize. Because of this, while there are nearly 1,200 charter schools in California, they are clustered only in districts that support reform. In 2014, there was some facilities funding expansion, but charter supporters annually are faced with legislative attempts to roll back progress and growth.
Online Learning Score: 0%
Over the 2012-2013 school year, the California Department of Education identified more than 66,000 students who took at least one online course and 22,000 students who took 50% or more of their courses online. Districts may restrict student enrollment in full-time online coursework and also have discretion over how many classes a student can take online. Restrictions on providers create barriers to expand the procurement of digital content throughout the state.
- Source: Digital Learning Now!
Teacher Quality Score: 68%
In California, evidence of student learning is not an important part of teacher evaluations. Seniority, not performance in the classroom, is used to make layoff decisions, and ineffective performance is not grounds for dismissal. Tenured teachers who are dismissed have multiple opportunities to appeal. The state does allow districts and unions to jointly develop merit pay or bonus systems for relevant prior work experience or for working in high-need schools or subjects, but the majority of districts are still on the uniform state system.