CCSA Responds to Report by In The Public Interest

April 10, 2017

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The California Charter Schools Association (CCSA) has serious concerns about the credibility of a report released today by Oakland-based organization, In the Public Interest (ITPI). We believe this report, "Spending Blind: The Failure of Policy Planning in California's Charter School Facility Funding," was released to help garner support for one the most aggressive anti-charter bills California has seen, Senate Bill 808 (Mendoza).

California Teachers Association (CTA) sponsored legislation SB 808 jeopardizes the future of every charter school in the state by allowing school districts to deny charter school appeals and renewals based purely on their financial impact to the district, rather than their academic performance. Help stop SB 808.

ITPI has a long history of publishing anti-charter reports. The author of this most recent anti-charter report is an associate professor at the University of Oregon's Labor Education and Research Center, a labor focused center led by the AFL-CIO.    The report is filled with many inaccuracies and distorts the charter public school facilities situation.  The report fails to mention:

  • Charters are growing due to parent demand for high quality public school options for children,
  • Charters are locating where the demand for options is the greatest,
  • Charters are accessing facilities funding programs for which they are eligible and that were specifically established to assist charters to provide high quality learning environments for students,
  • The challenges that charters face as school districts fail to follow the state law, Proposition 39.
  • Charters and CCSA have had to sue districts all the way to the California Supreme Court to try to secure compliance with Proposition 39 law, and still the districts fail to allocate space equitably to all public school students,
  • Charters spend a larger amount of funding on facilities because they are unable to access public school facilities to which their students are entitled under Proposition 39.

ITPI has a well-documented and biased point of view on the role charter schools play in the public education system, and their longstanding relationship with teachers unions   Today's report is likely just the latest tactic by CTA to not only stop charters from growing, but to shut down even the most effective charter schools. SB 808 would result in school districts having the ability to shut down any charter school simply because the charter school is competing for funding from the state.  SB 808 removes charter schools' right to appeal a denial of their petition or renewal to the County and the State Board of Education, removing any chance at due process.  The bill removes the authority of the state board or county boards to authorize charter schools under any circumstance.

Send a message to the Legislature that you do not support SB 808 by clicking here to complete the action alert.