A series by The Washington Post takes a hard look at charter schools in Washington, D.C. Approximately one-third of city's children attend these independent, nonprofit schools. The investigation shows that much of the $1.6 billion in local and federal money spent on charter school over the past 12 years has gone to the purchase and renovation of school buildings creating some of the best facilities in the area. The Post found a conflict of interest in the regulation of these funds, as the key players included bankers and developers who stood to gain from the decisions. The charter schools are succeeding in their academic mission. The Post's analysis of test scores showed marked improvements among low-income students attending the charters.