After Months of Uncertainty, Lawmakers Choose to Support Thousands of Families Seeking Access to Charter Schools

Posted by on 06 / 04 / 2015 0 Reactions

The Connecticut General Assembly today put the future of underserved children first by committing funding to public charter schools across the state.
For Immediate Release: Wednesday, June 3, 2015 
Contact: Michael Shulansky,
“This funding is one step on a long journey to provide every Connecticut child with access to a great public school.” – Jeremiah Grace, Connecticut State Director
Hartford, CT – The Connecticut General Assembly today put the future of underserved children first by committing funding to public charter schools across the state. That includes support for existing schools that are approved to grow with their students and serve new grades, additional seats at high-performing schools, and two schools approved by the State Board of Education to open this fall.
Jeremiah Grace, Connecticut State Director for the Northeast Charter Schools Network said:
“Thousands of parents and students can breathe easier knowing their futures are more secure. We’re grateful state leaders listened to families and rejected the spurious assertions of those who would prefer to see charters fail. We want to thank Governor Malloy and the Connecticut General Assembly for standing in solidarity with so many parents and children who visited the Capitol, called their legislators and made their voices heard.
“Today is a victory for hope and we're grateful, particularly in light of Connecticut’s fiscal challenges. But more work remains. Charter funding was held flat despite the fact that other public school children are seeing increases. We must continue to invest in what works, and public charter schools are working for the children and communities that need our help most. State leaders must continue making smart choices, like today’s, in order to grow a future where all Connecticut children have the opportunity to attend a great school.”
According to the State Department of Education, charters serve traditionally underserved students and do an exceptional job of preparing those children for their future.
  • Students of color make up over 90% of public charter school students, and over 70% of charter students come from low-income families. That is significantly higher than both the statewide average and the average of the school districts in which Connecticut’s charter schools reside.
  • 86% of elementary/middle public charter schools outperform their host districts, and the same can be said for 83% of charter high schools.
Throughout the budget process in Connecticut, opponents falsely claimed that charter schools were actually seeing a bump in state funding. In truth, today’s vote secures growth that was promised in past years, but flat-funds general operating funding for charter schools at the current rate of $11,000 per-pupil. Local district schools, meanwhile, received an increase through the Education Cost Sharing Formula.
About the Northeast Charter Schools Network: The Northeast Charter Schools Network is a regional membership organization for the more than 250 charter schools in Connecticut and New York. Its mission is to support and expand high quality charter schools in the region.
50 Elm Street, New Haven, CT 06510
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Phone: (518) 603-9091