Reauthorization bill (HR1891) for ESEA to simplify and enhance the federal charter program (posted 6/22/11)
*NABSE as an organization has not taken a position on Charter schools, as they are considered public schools. It, however is in the best interest of the organization to keep the membership informed of developments as they occur.
The Education community has now learned that the stimulus included language requiring states to boost their charter school cap, essentially requiring the expansion of charter offering if states want access to all of the new economic stimulus money.
A few days ago while addressing the media on how to turn around our lowest performing schools. Duncan cited the value of "real autonomy for charters combined with a rigorous authorization process and high performance standards".
1/12/10- Judge Ikuta of the United States District Court for the District of Arizona ruled today that in the case of the Horizon Charter School case, Horizon could not be held to certain LEGAL standards. Even though a non-profit corporation operation running the charter school receives public funding, it in fact operates as a private entity. Therefore its role was not that of a state actor as all other public schools in Arizona. In this case the plaintiff argued that his first amendment rights were violated as well as deprivation of his liberty interest.
NABSE has strong concerns about this decision. While the NABSE membership has never opposed public charter schools, IT STRONGLY OPPOSES PUBLIC MONIES GOING TO ENTITIES THAT VILOATE ANY C ITIZENíS CIVIL RIGHTS OR SUBJECTEs Any Citizen TO DISCRIMINATORY LAWS.
This case raises concerns, beyond Arizona, about public funding supporting private entities that are not subject to non-discrimination laws, as non-charter public schools are. Charter school laws vary state-by-state. Some state laws require charters to comply with all civil rights and other non-discrimination laws, honor First Amendment and due process rights, etc., including those at issue in this case.
Read the Court Opinion in detail.