Wednesday, November 14, 2007

More charter schools? Supporters of the alternative public schools scored a pretty huge victory Monday. A State Board of Education blue ribbon committee on charter schools voted to increase the number of schools by roughly six per year.

It's really the first state appointed group to approve the idea. Currently state law caps the number of schools to 100.

Charter schools are run like non-profit and can essentially set their own curriculum. They get per pupil funding but get no lottery or construction cash. Students do take end of grade tests. The first one opened up in 1997 and this committee is sort of a ten year later where are we now type of thing.

The cap idea must still pass the State Board of Education and the General Assembly. That's likely impossible. Democrats have ignored several bills to raise or get rid of the cap.

The blue ribbon committee also voted to basically give schools that fall into low performing and low growth categories two years to shape up or they will lose their charters.

Charter school supporters argue that's not fair because traditional public schools with similar problems remain open.

Should be interesting to follow but a pretty good day for supporters of charter schools.

No comments: