Contact your legislator, click here.
Now is the time for historic education reform in Pennsylvania!
With 40,000 children on charter school waiting
lists across the state, parents are frustrated that the bureaucracy is preventing their children from having access to more and better quality educational options. Opponents of this legislation want to gut the funding of
charter schools even though charters are already providing high-quality education for 30 percent less than what the taxpayer is paying to the school district.This legislation enables the equitable funding and intelligent growth of high-quality
SB 1115 enables us to learn from high-performing schools and weed out the bad ones. This legislation creates a strong independent statewide authorizer that is
empowered to establish strict, consistent, and effective standards against which all charters can be evaluated and then hold them to those
SB 1115 promotes
accountability and transparency in charter schools. This
legislation makes reporting of information open and consistent requiring public disclosure of information and performance
that can help everyone better understand where charter schools are excelling and where improvements can be made. This openness is good for public education and will hopefully divert the hundreds of
thousands of dollars from legal fees to educating our children. This legislation mandates accountability and
This past spring Pennsylvania charter school parents, teachers, students and education reform advocates from every corner of the commonwealth pushed charter reform to
the front of the Pennsylvania legislative agenda.
It was a long and tough battle but to everyone's delight the hard work paid off and Senate Bill 1115 passed the House containing comprehensive charter reform. To
everyone's disappointment, the Senate failed to act on it.
This fall we have one final chance for legislators to pass SB 1115, but we only have eight days for them to vote
before we will lose another year to pass charter school reform legislation of this magnitude.
It's our children who are the most
Copyright 2012 Pennsylvania Coalition of Public Charter Schools.
About the Pennsylvania Coalition of Charter Schools (PCPCS):
PCPCS is dedicated to choice, quality, and accountability in public education. We advocate for legislation and policies that support those objectives and provide assistance to charter
schools, with the aspiration of making every charter school in Pennsylvania a high performing public school. More than 90,000 children are enrolled in 167 charter schools throughout the Commonwealth
and more than 40,000 are on waiting lists.
For more information, visit www.pacharters.org
SB 1115 provides Parents with more high-quality
The time for charter school
legislative reform is now.
Contact your legislator, click here.
We are at a pivotal time in Pennsylvania's
education reform movement and it’s time for adults to put the best interests of our children at the apex of our priorities. Children fail only when adults fail. Senat Bill 1115 is a tremendous step in the right
direction and will provide families with greater access to high-quality public school options.
We strongly support this legislation and
we ask for your support.
- Specifies that the Open Meeting Law, Right to
Know Law, State Adverse Interest Act and Ethics Act apply to all charter school entities, prohibits conflicts of interest; and requires annual ethics filings.
- Creates an independent seven member
commission, separate from the PA Department of Education (PDE), which shall provide oversight of charter schools and cyber charter schools.
- Creates a 15 member statewide advisory
committee to explore charter school entity funding issues and make recommendations to the General Assembly and the Governor no later than March 13, 2013.
- Allows local school boards and the commission
to authorize charter schools. The commission would be limited to authorizing new charter schools only in the10% lowest performing districts. The commission shall be the only authorizer of cyber
- Standardizes and streamlines the application
and renewal process for all charter school entities.
- Authorizes the creation of a performance
matrix to be used by school boards and the commission to evaluate the performance of charter school entities.
- Prohibits payments from being dispersed or
received by circulators for signatures to convert a district-run school building to a charter school.
- Streamlines process by which charter school
entities are paid, allowing for direct payment from PDE.
- Standardizes reporting requirements and
requires better disclosure of information from charter school entities and their non-profit charter school foundations.
- Requires annual independent audits of charter
school entities and public disclosure.
- Allows for local boards of school directors to
convert an existing district-run school into a charter school entity.
- Allows for the merger of charter schools and
creation of Multiple Charter School Organizations.
- Prohibits charter school Boards of Trustees
members from receiving compensation for their duties on the board.
- Allows for charter school entities to seek
- Establishes five year minimums for new charter
schools and 10 year renewals.
- Increases the Charter Appeals Board from seven
to nine members, adding charter representation.
- Requires districts to make unused facilities,
not identified in a growth plan, available to charter school entities operating within the district. No school district shall charge a charter school entity greater than fair market value price
for the sale, lease, or rental of the existing facility or for property formerly used by the school district.
- Clarifies that all school property owned by a
charter school, cyber charter school or an associated non-profit foundation shall be exempt from state, county, city, borough, township or other real estate taxes.
- After June 30, 2013, permits existing brick
and mortar charter schools to petition their current authorizing school district or the commission for renewal at the expiration of their existing charter.
- Re-enforces that enrollment of students in a
charter school entity shall not be subject to a cap or otherwise limited by any past or future action of an authorizer. This provision shall apply to all existing and future charter school
- Establishes an Unreserved Fund Balance Limit
on charter school entities to the same funding percentages as school districts.
- Allows charter school and cyber charter school
students to participate in a dual enrollment program with an institution of higher education. Charter schools and cyber charter schools shall also be allowed to enter into a concurrent
enrollment agreement with an institution of higher education.
Know your charter bill: SB
Charter school reform is all about
It is our sincere hope that you will join us in Harrisburg to convince our legislators to finish passing the legislation parents and student
10:30am - Kick Off at the Forum Building
11am - Meet with legislators
12:30 pm - Rally at the Capitol Stairs
THE FORUM AUDITORIUM
500 Walnut Street, Harrisburg, PA 17101