The original Pennsylvania Charter School law was passed in 1997. The Pennsylvania Cyber Charter School Law was passed in 2002. Since 2002, the Cyber Charter School Law has been revised several times. There have been numerous efforts to revise these two laws. These efforts focus on additional “accountability”, reductions in funding, and attempts to put more requirements onto the functioning of Charter Schools. Most of these efforts fall short of the necessary votes in the PA House or the PA Senate. In 2019 there were a flurry of bills – mostly originating in the House, or from the governor – that, if passed, could do great damage to Pennsylvania’s Charter Schools. The support for these various initiatives waxes and wanes in large part based on the contacts parents and students make with their elected legislators.
There are 144,000 students attending charter schools. At $10,000 per student, 1.4 billion tax dollars each year are being spent by charter schools to educate all these students. It is no wonder that there is push back to have this flow of money reduced or cut back entirely. It is important for all charter school parents / students to let their state legislators know that their charter school is important to them.