FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
October 12, 2015
By David Dunn, Executive Director, Texas Charter Schools Association
Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick’s commitment to public education is evident in the release of the interim study charges for the Senate Education Committee. As a senator, former chair of the committee and now leader of the Senate, Lt. Governor Patrick has consistently advanced policies that strengthen public schools, increase options for parents and students, and foster innovation in classrooms across the state. The Texas Charter Schools Association commends Lt. Governor Patrick’s inclusion of a comprehensive review of public charters and the role these schools play in educating students from diverse academic and economic backgrounds.
The association pledges to work with the Senate Education Committee as it examines the implementation of Senate Bill 2 (83R), the landmark charter reform bill authored by Lt. Governor Patrick two sessions ago. Many elements of the law are working well, but the promise of quickly opening effective public charter schools remains largely unfulfilled. Time is running out for the more than 100,000 families on waitlists to attend a public charter school. Other important issues such as facilities funding and property ownership must also be addressed.
The months leading up to the 2017 state legislative session provide an opportunity to develop a deeper understanding of the barriers to and potential solutions for unleashing the full potential of public charter schools. We thank Lt. Governor Patrick for providing the framework for this continued dialogue and focus on our state’s children.