Daily Archives: June 13, 2009

Changes in Delaware charter school laws coming?

Rumor has it that there is consideration to amended the Charter school Law Title 14 , Chapter 507 to mandate that all public schools be offered to a charter school organization for conversion to a charter school if the said public school falls into required restructuring provision set by NCLB.

I am being told that some legislators are not happy with the method Red Clay restructured Conrad. Many legislators didn’t realize that rather than restructure Conrad in a way such as replacing all teachers and administrations to better serve the failing students within, Red Clay took in one step further by reassigning all students and making Conrad all Choice. By doing so, Red Clay broke the spirit on the Neighborhood School Legislation by putting undue burden on students and parents of Conrad area neighborhood families.

I think the Conrad concerns is just an excuse to amend the charter law that makes it near impossible for parents to demand an existing failing public school to be converted to a charter. As you can see it would take over 50% of the existing public school teachers within a given school to approve a conversion. Even if over 50% of parents and teachers vote in favor of conversion the local school board can override.

Looks like one more method of trying to bust the teacher’s union.

So, do you think it should be up to parents to make the decision to convert a failing public school to a charter school and not give the teachers and the school district a say?

TITLE 14
Education
Free Public Schools
CHAPTER 5. CHARTER SCHOOLS

§ 507. Labor relations.
(a) A public school may only be converted to a charter school by approval of the board of the school district in which it is located and that the charter application received the approval of over 50% of the teachers and over 50% of the parents residing in the attendance area of the school with a child or children under the age of 18 years, who, after 30 days prior written notice to all teachers and parents eligible to vote, attend a public meeting held for the specific purpose of voting on the proposed conversion; provided, however, that such approval shall not be required where a district school board converts a choice school or program with a specific career or academic subject matter focus already approved as of the effective date of this chapter to a charter school with the same focus. The employees of a school converted to a charter school who are not employed by the charter school shall be accorded the rights available to them under the provisions of their collective bargaining agreement and shall, to the extent permissible under their collective bargaining agreement, be given preference in filling positions in the school district.
(b) The employees of a school converted to charter status and who are employed by the charter school shall not be part of any bargaining unit which represented employees of the school while it was still part of the school district. Employees of charter schools shall have the same right to organize and bargain collectively as employees of other public schools. A bargaining unit shall not be deemed inappropriate under Chapter 40 of this title, simply because said unit is comprised of professional and non-professional positions within a charter school. A teacher may be a member of a bargaining unit and serve as a director of a charter school provided; however, that any teacher who is a director of a charter school shall recuse himself or herself from any board meeting, discussion or decision relating to the bargaining unit of which such teacher is a member.
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