With a 7-5 vote, the bill was amended and approved in committee to strip out the immediate savings for school districts (all $27 million for 2017-18 and the savings for 2018-19, which would have been generated by modifications to the cyber charter tuition calculation). The amendment did several other things, including modifying the makeup of the Charter Funding Commission to mirror that of the Basic and Special Education Funding Commissions, requiring charter schools to provide school districts with proof of residency for students prior to payment, and requiring charter schools to provide PDE with proof that an invoice was sent to a school district (and that the school district had an opportunity to pay) before asking for a subsidy deduction. (This also requires PDE to notify the school district prior to making the subsidy deduction.) The Senate has yet to take a final vote on the amended bill.
These changes to the bill resulted in questions from the House about their ability to find the votes to pass the bill on concurrence. Negotiations are underway on this issue and will continue over the weekend. It is not clear if an agreement can be reached, if the House can lift any or all of the Senate’s changes – and whether the governor would veto the bill.
Politico By KIMBERLY HEFLING 07/03/2017 05:24 AM EDT
Tashia Fauntroy and Kelli Jones are parents of children at Mastery Charter Schools’ Clymer, Cleveland and Picket campuses.
Jason Kaye is a writer and student advocate residing in Philadelphia.
In Washington, seldom are there unifying partnerships between Republicans and Democrats reaching across the aisle for the long-run benefit of America. A flourishing public education system, fostering adolescent development, is one of the civic pillars necessary to sustain a thriving democracy. Paradoxically, both student and "independent" parental voices are being silenced as partisan special interests have eclipsed control, circumventing broad-based community outreach. Unfortunately, millions of innocent children in the public school network end up trapped inside the vacuum of winner-take-all politics. The voting public is a crucial component to educational system checks and balances, but not enough objective data is dispersed to community members to make informed decisions on public education policies. On the U.S. Department of Education website, most statistics from each state's overall high school graduation rates are based on data from the 2012-13 academic year. On individual websites for some of the largest urban school districts — e.g., Philadelphia, Chicago, Atlanta — the overall high school graduation rates for the preceding academic year are not available. Where is the breakdown of every individual high school's graduation rates?
Thomas Murray, Director of Innovation for Future Ready Schools, a project of the Alliance for Excellent Education
Kristen Swanson, Director of Learning at Slack and one of the founding members of the Edcamp movement
*Leadership for Learning
*Professional and Community Leadership