The big front-page story in the NY Times about charter schools gets more things right than most stories about charters, but they completely buy in to the idea that a "rigidly structured environment" is the difference between success and failure for inner city schools. However, a more important story may turn out to be the relatively opaque nature of charter school finances. There have been rumblings in various parts of the country this year about extravagantly-paid administrators, trips to resorts for "professional development," and outright fraud. There's good discussion of that problem here.
On the other hand, as I said in a previous post, I know there are some teacher ed. programs that have built productive relationships with charters.