BILL SUMMARY for SB09-176
SENATE COMMITTEE ON EDUCATION
|Votes: View--> ||Action Taken: |
04:14 PM -- Senate Bill 09-176
Senator Spence, sponsor of Senate Bill 09-176, presented the bill. The bill requires school districts considering a bond election to finance capital construction to invite district charter schools to take part in discussions for the election no later than June 1 of the election year. She talked about issues facing charter schools around financing capital construction. She talked about the negotiations around the bill.
Carleen Clark, representing Jefferson Academy, testified in support of the bill. She spoke first to the bill generally, and then to amendment L.001.
Ms. Clark responded to committee questions about the amendment, and then continued with her description of the provisions contained in amendment L.001.
The following persons testified:
04:31 PM -- Bruce Caughey, representing the Colorado Association of School Executives (CASE), testified in opposition to the bill. Mr. Caughey said CASE recognizes that charter school capital construction is an issue that needs to be addressed. He spoke to changes made by the amendment, highlighting those with which CASE still has issues. He said charter bonds should not count against a school district's bond cap.
Mr. Caughey responded to committee questions and comments.
04:45 PM -- Jane Urschel, representing the Colorado Association of School Boards (CASB), testified in opposition to the bill. She said CASB recognizes the need to address capital facilities for charter schools, and recognizes that different districts have different needs. Dr. Urschel noted that she cannot commit CASB's support for the amendments. Dr. Urschel said CASB has many of the same concerns as CASE around the bill. Ms. Urschel discussed concerns with the bill. She spoke to the provisions for notice and a response to a submission by a charter school. She expressed hope that the stakeholders could continue to work on the bill.
Ms. Urschel responded to questions from committee members and engaged in a dialogue about how ballot questions are determined and posed for voters.
05:00 PM -- David Hart, representing Douglas County School District, testified in opposition to the bill.
He responded to committee questions.
05:08 PM -- Teri Aplin, representing Parker Core Knowledge Charter School, testified in support of the bill. She expressed concern with one aspect of amendment L.001. Ms. Aplin talked about how per pupil revenues are spent at her school. She said she likes the idea of charter schools and school districts working together, and said she has suggested this in her district.
She responded to committee questions and comments.
05:20 PM -- Richard Barrett, representing KIPP Colorado, testified in support of the bill. He talked about the population of students served by his school and about the challenges faced around facilities in KIPP schools.
Mr. Barrett responded to committee questions and comments.
05:26 PM -- Erin Kane, representing American Academy Charter School, testified in support of the bill. She described her school's facilities. Ms. Kane said facilities costs have increased dramatically in the past five years, but the funding model has not changed. She described her attempts to work with the school district on facilities. Ms. Kane talked about her school's debt payment, and the amount of their per pupil revenue it consumes.
Ms. Kane responded to committee questions and comments.
05:37 PM -- Donnell Rosenberg, representing herself, testified in support of the bill. Ms. Rosenberg said she is the mother of children who attend a charter school, and described her advocacy work for charter schools. She talked about the amount of time the administrators at her school spend on these issues, and said she feels those hours would be better spent helping the children in the school. She said the bill makes it easier for districts to say yes to charter schools and allows charter administrators to spend more time in the school.
Ms. Rosenberg responded to committee questions and comments.
05:43 PM -- Sandra Weckerly, representing the Flagstaff Academy, testified in support of the bill. She talked about the challenges faced by her school in getting capital funding, and she talked about the amount of per pupil revenue spent on debt repayment. She said her school pays for its facility at the expense of other children, especially at-risk children, who could be served at the school. Ms. Weckerly said charter schools could help get bond issues passed.
Senator Bacon announced that the bill would be heard for action only on March 12.
The committee adjourned.