GOP Weighing in on Charter School Facilities Issue
Paul D. Craney, executive director of the D.C. Republican Committee, is testifying on the charter school issue before the D.C. Council today. He sent D.C. Wire his testimony:
Below is an excerpt:
The Mayor's proposed budget for the public charter school facilities allowance puts the success of the District's charter school movement at risk. The funding cut that equates to $66,048,859 or $2,341 per student is unequally low to what the DCPS proposed capital budget is (236,435,000, or $5,248 per student). The new funding structure that is proposed in the public charter school budget prevents schools from purchasing or leasing a permanent site, from being renovated, or worse, it may put the school in default on a current loan. The way the new formula is written places restrictions on use of funds and eliminates the ability of a school to save facilities funds in a reserve for a down payment on a new building. It also does not identify if purchase of major
equipment (i.e. kitchen or laboratory equipment ) whether planned or in cases of emergency replacement is part of the allowable costs. Furthermore, the proposed process for getting the funds means a school cannot be assured of how much facility funding it will actually receive from year to year. With such unpredictability in funding and in today's economy, banks will not provide financing if they can't be assured of a predictable and consistent funding source to repay the loans. ...
Modifying the Mayor's proposed budget so that the city is funding both the traditional and public charter schools facilities equally, and ensuring that all of the district's children have access to the best educational facilities should be the top priority. ...
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