PSBA Legislative Priority Issue: Enact Meaningful Charter School Reforms

Pennsylvania School Boards Association

PSBA believes that the state must enact comprehensive reforms to address areas of charter school operations, accountability and funding. The average Pennsylvania school district spends millions of dollars in taxpayer money annually in mandatory payments to brick-and-mortar and cyber charter schools. The current charter school funding formula was established in 1997 under the state’s Charter School Law and has not been changed in the 24 years since it was first created. The formulas for regular and special education programs are unfair because they based on a school district’s expenditures and not what it actually costs to educate a child in the charter school. These payments require districts to send more money to charter schools than is needed to operate their programs and place a significant financial burden on districts’ resources and taxpayers. Overpayments are being made and this is particularly true for cyber charters. For a deeper explanation, facts and figures on charter school funding, explore the Keystone Center for Charter Change at PSBA website.