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Test results from Harlem's KIPP STAR College Prep Charter School, where students on average outperformed their district but not always the state. Graph from 2008 KIPP annual report.

Critics of KIPP charter schools have accused the national charter school chain of being opaque about how much money it spends and what kinds of students it serves. But KIPP says it’s committed to transparency, and so every year it releases a comprehensive report about its fundraising and planning efforts, and about how each of its schools is performing. The report about 2008 just went online today.

The report covers some familiar data points about how students at the city’s four KIPP schools are outperforming students at other schools in their districts on state tests. But it also includes the less often publicized fact that not all KIPP schools in New York always beat state test averages.

And while KIPP’s New York City schools have recently been at the center of a renewed battle over teachers unions in charter schools, the report card doesn’t get into politics, instead providing an overview of KIPP’s plans for growth and profiles of each of the organization’s 66 schools across the country. The profiles include pictures of each school leader, the demographic breakdown of students, per-pupil funding figures, and state reading and math test results. The section about the city’s KIPP schools begins on page 84.

Also of interest, particularly if you’ve been following along with Ken Hirsh’s hunt for financial information about charter schools, is the list of foundations and individuals that gave to KIPP during the 2007-2008 school year, broken down by gift size. You can find that at the very end of the report.