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March 10. 2014 4:23PM

Charter cap trap: A restriction to repeal

Current state law limits the percentage of students who can transfer from their existing public school to a charter school within one school year. The cap is set at 10 percent per grade. It should be zero. A bill up for a vote in the House this week would achieve that change.

House Bill 1392 would do nothing more than delete the single-sentence transfer cap from state law. There is no cap on how many students can transfer out of a failing traditional public school and enroll in another traditional school or a private school. The cap applies only to charter schools.

Remarkably, the House Education Committee has recommended passing the bill. In opposition, the minority on the committee wrote, tellingly, “the unintended consequence could negatively impact the public school by depleting a grade level of attendance or curriculum options.”

“The” public school? The minority needs reminding that charter schools are public schools. This law restricts the movement of children from one public school to another — at the request of their parents. It is an indefensible attempt to force children to remain in inadequate schools. It should be repealed.


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