CCSA's Statement on the Assembly Education Committee Passage of AB 1198 and AB 1426

April 29, 2015

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President and CEO Jed Wallace of the California Charter Schools Association (CCSA) released the following statement regarding the approval of AB 1198 (Dababneh) which will create the California Credit Enhancement Program allowing charter schools to save money on facilities financing costs and AB 1426 (Levine), creating flexibility in the law for site based blended learning programs by the Assembly Education Committee today.

By supporting both AB 1198 (Dababneh) and AB 1426 (Levine) the Assembly Education Committee has taken concrete steps to improve conditions for charter public schools and the more than 550,000 students they serve in California. We thank the authors and the committee members for investing in charter schools and recognizing the important role that charters play in public education across the state.

The creation of the CA Credit Enhancement Program (CCEP) under AB 1198, enables a public-private partnership that utilizes social impact bonds and will allow charter schools to save money on financing costs. This is vital to charter schools so that they are viewed as viable investment opportunities to banks and will reduce volatility and high interest rates as they attempt to secure facility loans. Under CCEP, charter schools would have the financial backing of the state and would benefit from reduced financing rates that will allow charter schools to save money "on" the classroom and devote more money "in" the classroom.

AB 1426 (Levine) creates needed flexibility for site-based schools that offer blended learning programs to their students. Currently, classroom-based charter schools are required to offer at least 80% of instructional time at a school-site. AB 1426 would lower that requirement to 60% for site based blended learning programs offering them more flexibility while also preserving their ability to access facilities and facilities funding.