Charter authorization board declared unconstitutional

In its constant effort to clear away any obstacles to unrestricted charter school proliferation, the national charter industry came up with this ploy to deal with those pesky school boards that refuse to approve any and all charter proposals brought to them: go around the elected school boards and turn charter authorizing over to appointed, “independent” charter authorizers.

And yes, our Illinois legislators bought that pig-in-a-poke in the last session. SB 79 was introduced by Heather Steans, sister of head charter cheerleader Robin Steans, CEO of Advance Illinois, who is extremely likely to be named to the new authorizing commission, if the governor signs the bill.

In fact, you might want to slip a note to Governor Quinn on this one, since the concept has just been declared unconstitutional by the Georgia Supreme Court.

“What is important about this opinion is that local control means local control,” said (attorney) Bowers. He said the ruling will ensure that lawmakers abide by the state constitution.


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About the PURE Thoughts blogger
Julie Woestehoff is PURE's executive director. Julie's work has earned her a Ford Foundation award and recognition as one of the 100 Most Powerful Women in Chicago.