Nonprofit EMOs enjoy steady growth
Dec. 1, 2009
KALAMAZOO--In contrast with their for-profit counterparts, nonprofit education management companies are growing at a steady rate, a study released by researchers at Western Michigan University and two partner institutions has found.
The new report was released jointly by the WMU College of Education, the Education Policy Research Unit at Arizona State University and the Education and the Public Interest Center at the University of Colorado at Boulder. It finds that nonprofit EMOs "are garnering more support and are growing steadily, while the growth of for-profit EMOs is slowing."
The study was compiled as part of the 2008-09 edition of "Profiles of Nonprofit Education Management Organizations" and comes after an earlier study examining for-profit EMOs. The new report was written by Dr. Gary Miron, WMU professor of educational leadership, research and technology, and Jessica Urschel, a WMU graduate research assistant. Miron and Urschel also co-wrote the for-profit EMO study with Dr. Alex Molnar, a professor at Arizona State University.
Michigan has been leading the way in the hiring of education management organizations to run charter and conventional public schools. The EMO sector emerged in the 1990s as part of an effort to use market forces to reform public education. Until recently, most attention has been focused on for-profit EMOs; however, new interest and private funds have been devoted to the nonprofit management sector.
"The nonprofit EMOs are quite diverse," Miron says. "Some of them charge similar fees and behave similarly to for-profit EMOs. An increasing number of the nonprofit EMOs, however, are actually bringing additional financial resources to the charter schools they operate. These are resources which they funnel from private foundations."
Both for-profit and nonprofit EMOs are changing the education landscape, Urschel says.
"Although this new form of privatization is less common among traditional public schools, EMOs now operate close to 30 percent of the nation's charter schools," Urschel notes.
Nonprofit profiles report--other findings
The "Profiles in Nonprofit Education Management Organizations" report is available online at: http://epicpolicy.org/publication/profiles-nonprofit-emos-2008-09.
For more information, contact Dr. Gary Miron, WMU professor of educational leadership, research and technology, at (269) 599-7965 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Media contact: Mark Schwerin, (269) 387-8400, email@example.com