Monday, November 18, 2019

Amidst all the turmoil and tumult that defines the state of education finance in Kansas, at least one education and learning issue is a steady-as-she-goes: Kansas gets an “F” in its charter education law.

The just-released 2018 National Charter School Law Rankings and Scorecard 2018 yet again gives the Sunflower State a unable grade when it comes to allowing public charter schools to are in existence, expand and autonomously thrive. Oh is one of only four of your 44 states with hire school laws to acquire this dubious distinction.

The file, an annual production from the Focus for Education Reform, examines four aspects of charter laws and regulations: authorizers, growth, operations and collateral. Points are allocated for a way the charter law details each of those.

Here’s how Kansas ratings:

  • Authorizers C 0 out of 10. Kansas receives zero points because only university districts can authorize a new charter school which also needs State Board of Schooling approval without any provision with regard to appeal for rejected job seekers.
  • Equity C 0 out of 15. Kansas gets another zero because there is no provision for charter school funding inside law, thereby making hire funding a decision left as much as the school districts that authorize them.
  • Operations C 2 out of 20. There are a few factors that lead to this small score.
    • Charters get no blanket exemptions from regulations that affect school districts.
    • Charters must request exemptions from specific polices in their charter applications.
    • The state requires charter teachers for being traditionally certified, which stops the ability of charters to workforce the schools the way they see fit.

Even both the points awarded are undeserved. Many people get 2 (out of 6) for what’s called “Ability to Innovate.” How can Kansas charter colleges be innovative with all the built-in limitations?

  • Growth C 10 out of 15. Wow! Why countless points for growth whenever there are only 10 charters while in the entire state? Because the legal requirements does not cap the total range of charters allowed. That is particularly misleading, because if only school districts can authorize, there is absolutely no provision for separate capital, and there are no exemptions by regulations, it amounts to the self-inflicted cap.

Charter schools play a crucial role in public education across the country. Some people stand as beacons of choice while in the sea of a prescriptive, one-size-fits-all approach that could be failing millions of students across the country, including thousands here in Iowa.

As the Legislature grapples with how much more no-strings-attached income to give public schools, it’s long overdue to break the actual vice-grip of the traditional public institution approach to education.

Why is it that the Kansas Legislature continues to allow parents from having a greater solution in the education of their young children? The Legislature would better provide the students if the new financial law included a real constitution school law.

Because KPI and other scholars have showed over and over more and more money will not improve undergraduate outcomes, expanding charter universities would be one step in handling the 25% of students identified by the last Court as not receiving a good education.

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