Charter School Bills 2010-2014

This timeline will examine all bills related to public charter school, between 2010 & 2014. From 2010-2012 a number of supportive bills were passed including; removing the cap of 20 schools, granting charter schools eligibility to receive facility lease aid, granting mature schools the ability to take on long-term debt and clarifying costs associated with special education. In contrast, the 2012-2014 session began with the Democratic House Majority including a number of provisions within HB2 that would have harmed the schools. These included; a moratorium on new schools, preventing the DOE from requesting additional funds for charters (if needed) during the biennium, increasing the number of program audits and requiring the State Board of Education to approve enrollment increases.

Although public charter schools represent only about 2% of public school enrollment, these public schools are seen by some special interest groups as threats.

HB555 - In Senate Education

This bill would allow charter students to participate in extra-curricular activities at their resident district school. The law currently allows private school students and home school students to participate but not public charter students.

HB253 Retained in Committee

This bill would make it easier to block new charter schools. An identical bill was killed last year. This bill would change the charter approval process dramatically, creating a chokepoint to block authorization. SPONSORS: June Frazer (d), Mary Gorman (d), Mary Gile (d), Mel Myler (d), Senator Feltes (d) 1.It would have increased the value of 1 criterion (the mission statement), to 50 points (out of 100). 2.It would have devalued much more important criteria including; academic and learning goals, the ability to serve student needs, curriculum, founder qualifications, governance, and financial sustainability. 3. This would have created an effective choke point whereby you could deny a charter school application on the basis of 1 criterion alone. 4. It would have allowed the SBE to block charter authorizations based on geographic location.

HB2 - Status: Senate removed anti-charter provisions.

HB2 included a number of provisions that would have harmed current and future charter schools. SPONSOR: Rep. Wallner (d). STATUS: The Senate removed all of the anti-charter provisions in the Committee of Conference.

HB1128 - Status: PASSED

Creates a committee to study special education in charter schools. Sponsors: Mel Myler (d) June Frazer (d) Rick Ladd (r)

HB435 - Status: Interim Study (Killed by House)

Bill would have increased funding for public schools. SPONSORS: Kenneth Weyler (r) Kris Roberts (d) John Sedensky (r) John Reagan (r). STATUS: Interim Study (killed by the House majority)

HB1394 - Status: KILLED by House

Bill would have funded charter school lease aid for facilities. SPONSORS: Kenneth Weyler (r) Ralph Boehm (r) John Reagan (r). STATUS: KILLED by House majority in party line vote.

HB1225 - Status: PASSED

This bill permitted charter schools operating for five or more years to incur long-term debt to finance a facility or capital campaign. SPONSORS: Gregory Hill (r) James Forsythe (r)

SB300 - Status: PASSED

Relative to special education services in chartered public schools. SPONSORS: Sharon Carson (r) John Hunt (r)

HB505 - Status: PASSED

This bill authorized chartered public schools to receive school building aid grants for leased space. SPONSORS: Timothy Comerford (r) Jason Antosz (r) Kenneth Weyler (r) Donna Schlachman (d)

HB1141 - Status: Interim Study (Killed by Senate)

Bill would have required charter schools (but not other public schools) to notify the superintendent within 7 days of a child enrolling. SPONSORS: Syndi White (d)

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