NACSA | | More About One Million Lives

More About One Million Lives

More About

One Million Lives



Good schools don’t just teach children, they open doors for them. One Million Lives will help open doors for more than one million children by giving them the opportunity to attend a great school.

The National Association of Charter School Authorizers (NACSA) has launched the One Million Lives campaign, dedicated to providing one million more children the chance to attend a great school that will prepare them for success throughout their lives. By engaging authorizers and a broad coalition to close failing charter schools and open many more good ones, we can get one million more children into 3000 high-performing schools over the next five years.

The Problem: Charter schools are doing well, but not well enough

Public charter schools first started 20 years ago because too many children didn’t have the opportunity to attend a good school. We’ve made great strides, and thousands of charter schools have been providing an excellent education to students around the country. But even after two decades of chartering, too many students fail to graduate and too few students are academically prepared for success. While many charter schools perform at the highest levels, many others perform at the lowest levels. Charter schools are not the only solution in public education, but they shouldn’t be part of the problem. The authorizers that have approved these failing charter schools and allow them to stay open bear much of the responsibility. Now is the time for the charter school community to fix the failings in its sector so that more children can have the opportunity to attend an excellent school.

The Solution: One million seats in great schools 

The charter movement is growing at a healthy pace, but we need to bend the quality curve upward. The One Million Lives campaign will engage charter school authorizers to lead the way by closing failing schools and opening more great schools over the next five years.  We want to see children in 3000 more higher-achieving schools by the end of the 2017-18 school year.

Not all the new high-performing schools have to be charters – so we challenge state and district leaders to join with us. But we can start by demanding more of our own movement. Providing one million children with the opportunity to attend a great school is a team effort that will require stronger performance and greater accountability all around.

NACSA is working to support three critical areas--People, Policy and Practice. We will work with lawmakers to create stronger performance and accountability laws for charter schools and for authorizers. We will advocate for the creation of statewide authorizers that develop professional, independent expertise. We are also launching new human capital initiatives and powerful, personalized online resources to strengthen the skills of authorizing staff.

Throughout the nation, more and more state, city, and school leaders are embracing high-quality chartering as a way to improve public education in their communities. These leaders know that charter schools can be excellent and they want them to serve all children well. In these communities, quality, high standards, and accountability are at the forefront of the charter school philosophy. 

The public charter school idea will only succeed if charters are great schools. Not only will schools need to be at their best, but authorizers also need to improve. By expecting more from everyone, we can give one million children a better chance to succeed in life.

Join the One Million Lives initiative! Find out more at



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