TEXT to Action!

It’s Time to Act for TRUE Equality.

We demand more transparency
and accountability

We know that all students deserve access to great public schools.  However, too many charters use the 18 AUTOMATIC exemptions from state law to create schools that are NOT representative of the neighborhoods or even districts that they reside in.  Accepting gifts, grants, and donations without reporting requirements; changing attendance polices; not engaging in competitive bidding; not following the educational programing and textbook requirements; and other exemptions create schools that are not neighborhood schools!

 

HB 1343 would require that charter schools submit replacement plans for each law waived. This is the same process that is currently required for non-automatic waiver requests!

 

Senate Bills 187 and 188 would a set state mandated one-size-fits-all distribution of ALL (past and future) locally approved mill levy funds to ALL charter schools (not just those approved by a district); while at the same time reducing their accountability requirements.

 

WE NEED TO MAKE SURE OUR STATE REPRESENTATIVES KNOW THAT WE WANT ACCOUNTABILITY AND
TRANSPARENCY FOR ALL

NOT DIFFERENT RULES
FOR DIFFERENT SCHOOLS.

 

Contact your State Representative to let them know that charter schools currently play by different rules and are demanding more money without local input (SB 188) and with less accountability/transparency (SB 187).  Please make sure all schools are treated equally by SUPPORTING HB 1343!

 IT’S EASY TO DO:

Simply TEXT the word WAIVER to 64336

 

When you get a text back:

1)      Dial the number received

2)      Enter your zip code

3)      You’ll be connected to your state Representative

4)      Urge them to support HB 1343 and to oppose SB 187 and 188

 Ask others to text WAIVER to 64336!

ACT now and tell your rep to support HB-1343 and oppose SB-187 and 188!


THINGS TO KNOW ABOUT HB 1343

Charter schools are automatically waived from 18 state statutes.  They do not need to provide any documentation on how they intend to meet each law.

House Bill 1343 will:

  • · Ensure legal compliance
  • · Provide taxpayers more accountability and transparency
  • · Increase expectations for parents and community members
  • · Level playing field for all schools
  • · Maintain charter flexibility but require replacement plans for any law waived

 

Parents have testified in support of this bill because-
PARENTS DESERVE TO KNOW:

  • · ALL policies on training, safety, welfare and official conduct
  • · If teachers are unlicensed or what qualifications teachers have
  • · If their school has due process to protect whistleblowers
  • · Who is teaching their kids and how they were selected.

 

DON’T LISTEN TO THE MYTHS

MYTH #1: This bill is redundant. Charter contracts already cover replacement plans for waivers.

FACT: Some may, some don’t. State laws doesn’t require replacement plans for all laws waived; they simply need to list what they’re waiving.

 

MYTH #2: Forcing charters to request waivers, write replacement plans, and get them reviewed is an undue burden and is just more bureaucratic red tape

FACT: Parents and taxpayers deserve to know how charters will comply with each law they waive

 

MYTH #3: This bill will stifle charter schools’ innovation and flexibility.

FACT: HB 1343 does *not* prevent charter schools from waiving these laws. It simply requires them to state how they will meet intent of each law.

MYTH #4: Charter schools waive out of these laws because they’re held to a higher standard.

 

FACT: That’s untrue. There is absolutely nothing in State Board of CDE policies about standards or criteria for waivers. They are not held to a higher standard, they’re held to a different one!

 

THINGS TO KNOW ABOUT SB 187 and 188

 

SB187 would create less accountability and transparency by:

  • · Allowing fewer Unified Improvement Plans (UIPs) to track progress of charter schools compared to neighborhood school requirements
  • · Allowing less detail in the audit process for charters
  • · Allowing comingling of funds from multiple districts (some charter networks extend into multiple districts)
  • · Demands additional accounting from districts for services provided to charter schools

 

SB188 fails taxpayers and parents, AND students:

Assault on Local Control: Mill levy equalization should be left to local, elected school boards who are accountable to voters.

LOCAL Mill $ to Other Districts: Funds could be co-mingled by charter networks that cross multiple districts with no mechanism to track where local mill $ ends up!

Funding equity should require accounting for ALL funds: Charters can accept and expend gifts, grants and donations that local school boards cannot. This is a result of special exemptions charter schools have from law.

Equality and Accountability: Charters have non-elected boards established as a set entity as part of their contract AND are automatically allowed to have unlicensed teachers, accept unlimited outside gifts, grants and donations, and requirement for minimum hours of teacher-pupil instruction and more!

Unnecessary and violates existing contracts: Charters voluntarily enter in contracts with school districts AND there is already law allowing charter schools to raise mill levy revenue from voters. CRS 22-30.5-119

Chronic underfunding of K-12: All Colorado schools and the 860,000 students, not just charters, are hurt by the ongoing funding cuts of $831M (negative factor), AND “equalizing” ONLY the Charter School Institute would require additional $12.2M in General Fund expenditures.