In 1983, Americans were thrown into a panic by a dramatic report showing a decline in the nation’s schools. Amongst its findings: that educational outcomes were even worse for minority students than they were for whites. The result was a surge of activity aimed at closing the opportunity gap. The most successful product of those efforts: charter schools. Here’s the plot twist: in the present day—when the highest-performing charter schools are showing results so significant that they’ve nearly closed the education gap—opposition to charters is more pronounced than ever. Parents and students want the opportunity charters provide. Over a million children are waitlisted for admission to charter schools throughout the country. So why are so many critics hostile to their existence?