PSBA Legislative Priority Issue: Charter School Reform
PSBA believes that the state must enact comprehensive and meaningful charter school reforms that reduce the financial burden on school districts and require the same high standards of academic performance and accountability. (Adopted by the PSBA Delegate Assembly as a legislative priority issue for the 2023-24 session of the General Assembly.)
The state’s Charter School Law (CSL) dates back to 1997 and outside of adding provisions which allowed for the creation of cyber charter schools in 2002, has seen very little change since its enactment 25+ years ago.
Due to the significant need for charter school reform, PSBA created a Charter School Task Force made up of school board directors, superintendents and school solicitors as part of a multiyear effort to examine the state’s current charter school law, along with previous efforts to update the law. In addition, the task force studied data and conducted panel discussions with advocates and organizations representing different perspectives in order to develop a series of specific, balanced recommendations for meaningful charter school reforms.
PSBA also created the Keystone Center for Charter Change at PSBA (Center). The mission of the Center is to build support for the development and enactment of legislation that would provide regulatory and funding changes to the CSL through active advocacy, timely research, increased awareness, as well as education on issues related to charter school reform. The Center’s website is an excellent resource for facts, figures, and explanations that demonstrate the need for reform.
Keystone Center for Charter Change
PSBA Charter School Taskforce Report – The result of a multiyear effort review and make specific, balanced recommendations for meaningful charter school reforms.
Take Action: Tell your legislator we need charter funding reform now! Click here to send a letter to your legislator
A Closer Look: It’s time to reform special education payments for charter schools — Charter schools are still paid using a flawed formula that does not reflect what they are spending to educate their students with disabilities, resulting in millions of dollars in overpayments.
A Closer Look: Do charter schools really receive 25% less funding per student than school districts? — To unlock the 25% myth, it is important to understand the revenue and the reasons surrounding charter school funding issues.
A Closer Look: Why it’s time to change the cyber charter funding system — Pennsylvania’s current method of funding cyber charter schools utilizes a flawed and outdated formula that results in inconsistencies and overpayments.