Following immediately on the heels of the approval of the latest round of new charter school operators, the Texas Education Agency (TEA) is looking to finalize its Generation 26 Charter Operator Application Process. On October 22, ATPE and 19 other pro-public education organizations sent feedback to the agency recommending 37 changes to the application process.
Top recommendations made by the groups include the following:
- Requiring charter applicants to identify the specific zip code where any new charter campus, or campuses, will be located so that the need for a new charter campus can be more accurately assessed.
- Requiring TEA to consider and make public the additional cost to the state of new campuses proposed in the application submitted by each prospective new charter operator.
- Requiring TEA to expand the criteria for approval of new charters to include the impact of the proposed charter on public schools and local communities.
- Requiring TEA to change the application process to a two-year cycle to accommodate the demands of the legislative session and allow for more accurate budget projections based on approved charter enrollment.
- Requiring the charter applicant to provide additional information that would better inform the agency, external reviewers, SBOE members, and the public. Such additional information includes related party and real estate transactions; professional development hours by proposed programs; more specific information about innovative programs; and unredacted management services agreements.
Read the full list of changes sought by ATPE and the other organizations here.