In the old days, when you were fed up with the public schools, you paid for private schooling, or you home schooled. You see the Board of Education has always had competition, but the amount of commitment or wealth needed to leave their system, made the competition bearable. Then something changed. A lot of parents stopped trusting the government system. They had legislation passed, no small accomplishment there and began creating their own public schools under charter from the government. The Charter Schools are public schools, but run by a board chosen by the parents in the school, not the town elected Board of Education. Here finally was a real choice for the masses of children to go to, and some people wanted that stopped!
It's not an easy thing, to start a school, especially with the handicaps on the Charter Schools, and so some have failed and gone away. The point is that they could do that. No one had to live with a school that was failing their kids. Others have done well, so well that they can't grow enough to satisfy the parents and the students. Charter Schools have limits, and can't replace the old public schools.
A few surviving Charter Schools are still too much for some who are invested in the old system. They point out that the got the message, made the changes and that the old schools are better than ever, that the Charter Schools are not needed anymore. Let's just get rid of them now. Think about the future though. It took years for the system to run down, to get staid, stodgy and arthritic in method. It took courts to take them over. What will we as parents do, should that time come again? Government has a long memory when it so chooses. When the people call for Charter Schools again, government will ask a question. If the Charter Schools are a good solution, then where are they from the last time? This option may never come again, and that is why we still need Charter Schools.