State legislators hope to draw from existing charter school implementations from different states. Kentucky Education Secretary Hal Heiner explains, “Our hope in Kentucky, if we were to have that possibility and become the 44th state to have charters, is that would we pick from the highest-performing states’ legislation”.
Even though Republicans are more likely to favor charter schools, a representative from the Democratic party, State Senator Gerald Neal, has filed a motion for the 2017 General Assembly for a pilot charter school program in Fayette and Jefferson counties. The bill failed to pass in 2016.
According to the Lexington Herald Leader,
“Beginning in academic year 2018-2019 and continuing through academic year 2022-2023, the charter school pilot project would allow a local school board in a county with a consolidated local government to authorize a maximum number of two charter schools per academic year. Unlike other public schools, a charter school’s organizer enters into a performance-based contract, or charter, that spells out the school’s governance, funding, accountability and flexibility, education officials have said.”
The bill also proposes:
Charter schools would be allowed freedom and flexibility in exchange for exceptional levels of results.
An application to establish a charter school could be submitted to a local school board by teachers, parents, school administrators, community residents, public organizations, private organizations, or a combination of those.
Funding for a charter school would be negotiated as part of the charter agreement between the local school board and the charter school. At a minimum, the agreement would require the local board in which the charter school is located to provide funding to the charter school at levels comparable to funding provided to other schools in the school district.
A charter school would submit an annual report to the school board and the state education commissioner citing measures of academic and fiscal performance of the school. The measures would include graduation rates, dropout rates, performance of students on standardized tests, college entry rates, student attendance and behavior records, student disciplinary actions, total spending per student and administrative spending per student.
The local school board could revoke a charter contract, decide not to renew a charter contract, or place a charter school on probationary status if the charter school did not make adequate progress.
Enrollment decisions would have to be made in a nondiscriminatory manner.
Disabled students would receive services under the legislation.