Give them 15 years
Charter schools where students perform well year after year could get a boost in their efforts to stay alive. The House moved a bill (HB 1569) forward today that would automatically grant charters that earn an A or B grade from the state for three of four years a 15-year contract renewal. Right now, the schools often have to fight for a five-year renewal. The change, if approved, would give the charter schools a more stable financial footing if they seek to build or grow - something that's hard to do now, especially given that the state does not give them money for construction. Several school districts, which serve as the primary sponsors of most charter schools, don't like the provision, saying it's hard enough to control charters as it is. Others note, though, that they would retain the ability to close a charter school down for poor performance. The bill's fate remains uncertain, though, as the Senate companion (SB 2878) is losing traction because of opposition to other parts of the legislation relating to retirement benefits. One week to go.