This from Brad Hughes at KSBA:
Local school board authorizationwould be critical tostate leaders' support
The Kentucky Board of Education Wednesday chose to take no position on creating charter schools in the state. But KBE members want more information on the matter should Kentucky’s lack of charter schools end up hurting its application for $200 million in federal Race to the Top funding.
And state board members agreed with Education Commissioner Terry Holliday that if charters are to be created in Kentucky, authorization by local boards of education would be key to their support.
“My sense of the board is that we don’t have a compelling desire for charter schools,” said KBE Chairman Joe Brothers, “but if that’s what it takes to get us in good stead with the federal government, it is very similar to a lot of things that we’ve been doing for 20 years, including site-based councils.”
Vice Chairwoman Dorie Combs agreed that the state board isn’t ready to take a position on charters…at this point.
”I think where we are is that before we do anything, we need more information. I would suggest staff continue to research this issue and, should we have a need to be more specific, bring us back together,” Combs said.
The state board discussion resulted from Holliday’s request for guidance as the 2010 legislative session progresses and the state awaits a March 1 notice of the status of its Race to the Top application.
“What if our score comes back and says, ‘You know, you would have been a finalist if you had had charter school legislation’? Holliday said. “So all I’m trying to do, as I told the KSBA conference, is preparing a Plan B. What would we do if we find the only reason we didn’t get Race to the Top funds is charter schools?” ...