PA: The High Markup For Cyberschooling

Curmudgucation Blog by Peter Green, August 17, 2022

Cyber charters are expensive as hell in Pennsylvania because we are stubbornly stuck with a system that pays the charter based on the cost-per-pupil of the sending school–not what it actually costs the cyber charter to serve that student.  This has left Pennsylvania cybers swimming in money like Scrooge McDuck on a big golden bender. For instance, in just two years, the fourteen cyber charters of Pennsylvania spent $35 million dollars of taxpayer money just on marketing. Governor Wolf has been trying to reform the system, but there’s a great deal of resistance (backed by a bunch of lobbying money, because cyber charters can afford that).  During the pandemic, many schools set up their own version of cyber school, and that has created an opportunity to see just how huge the markup is for cyber chartering. Check out this excerpt from an op-ed written by the Kenneth Berlin, superintendent of Wattsburg Area School District.

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