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HOUSE DOCKET, NO. 1502         FILED ON: 1/16/2013

HOUSE  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  No. 530

 

The Commonwealth of Massachusetts

_________________

PRESENTED BY:

Martha M. Walz

_______________

To the Honorable Senate and House of Representatives of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts in General
              Court assembled:

              The undersigned legislators and/or citizens respectfully petition for the adoption of the accompanying bill:

An Act relative to charter schools.

_______________

PETITION OF:

 

Name:

District/Address:

Martha M. Walz

8th Suffolk

Cory Atkins

14th Middlesex

Kay Khan

11th Middlesex

Denise Andrews

2nd Franklin

Carl M. Sciortino, Jr.

34th Middlesex


HOUSE DOCKET, NO. 1502        FILED ON: 1/16/2013

HOUSE  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  No. 530

By Ms. Walz of Boston, a petition (accompanied by bill, House, No. 530) of Martha M. Walz and others relative to charter schools.  Education. 

 

[SIMILAR MATTER FILED IN PREVIOUS SESSION
SEE HOUSE, NO. 1086 OF 2011-2012.]


The Commonwealth of Massachusetts
 

_______________

In the Year Two Thousand Thirteen

_______________

 

An Act relative to charter schools.
 

              Whereas, The deferred operation of this act would tend to defeat its purpose, which is to provide greater transparency and accountability for charter schools, therefore, it is hereby declared to be an emergency law, necessary for the immediate preservation of the public convenience.
 

              Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Court assembled, and by the authority of the same, as follows:
 

              SECTION 1. Subsection (h) of section 89 of chapter 71 of the General Laws, as appearing in the 2010 Official Edition, is hereby amended by inserting after the word “students.”, in lines 133 and 134, the following sentence:-

              All information submitted to the board by a commonwealth charter school applicant shall be submitted simultaneously to the school committees of affected districts and shall be immediately made available by the board to members of the public without a request under section 10 of chapter 66.

              SECTION 2.  Said subsection (h) of said section 89 of said chapter 71, as so appearing, is hereby further amended by striking out the last sentence of the first paragraph and inserting in place thereof the following sentences:-

              A comprehensive written summary of all materials prepared by the department or its administrative subdivisions regarding a charter application shall be delivered to the members of the board, the applicant, and affected districts not later than 10 working days before any board vote on the charter application.  Any report prepared by the department or its administrative subdivisions regarding a charter application shall be delivered to the members of the board, the applicant, and affected districts within 10 days of the completion of the report.

              SECTION 3.  Said subsection (h) of said section 89 of said chapter 71, as so appearing, is hereby further amended by inserting after the word “districts”, in line 148, the following words:- at least 10 working days.

              SECTION 4.  Subsection (j) of said section 89 of said chapter 71, as so appearing, is hereby amended by striking out the second sentence of the first paragraph and inserting in place thereof the following sentences:-

              The board shall create and use a rubric for the approval of a charter application.  The board shall publicly review each charter application against the rubric at each stage in the application process.  In reviewing applications, the board shall consider whether the school committee in the community in which the charter school is to be located or the school committee in any community from which the charter school is expected to enroll students has been asked to implement the educational program being proposed by the applicant and has declined to do so. 

              SECTION 5. Subsection (m) of said section 89 of said chapter 71, as amended by section 3 of chapter 199 of the acts of 2011, is hereby further amended by inserting after the first paragraph the following paragraph:-

              A charter school may not administer tests to potential applicants or predicate enrollment on results from any test of ability or achievement; provided, however, that a performing, visual, or graphics arts school may hold auditions or require evaluations of visual or graphic arts portfolios.

              SECTION 6.  Subsection (dd) of said section 89 of said chapter 71, as appearing in the 2010 Official Edition, is hereby amended by inserting after the word “students”, in line 597, the following words:- , teachers, and administrators.

              SECTION 7. Subsection (ff) of said section 89 of said chapter 71, as so appearing, is hereby amended by adding the following paragraph:-

              In the event that the board revokes a charter, or if a charter school ceases to exist for any reason, the charter school shall, within six months of the revocation of the charter or closure of the school, submit to the board a detailed financial accounting of all the school’s assets, including all real property, vehicles, equipment and supplies. 

              SECTION 8. Subsection (jj) of said section 89 of said chapter 71, as so appearing, is hereby amended by inserting after the word “charter;”, in line 733, the following:-

              (ii) discussion of progress made toward the benchmarks and retention efforts described in the school’s recruitment and retention plan; provided, that if a charter school has not enrolled and retained a student population matching the benchmarks, the report must explain why this is the case; (iii) an accounting of how many students were designated as requiring special education services or English language services by language proficiency level as measured by the Massachusetts English Proficiency Assessment examination or its successor upon enrollment and how many of these students were subsequently no longer designated as such, along with a description of methods used by the school to achieve these outcomes and the rationale behind the methodologies used; (iv) the number of students, teachers and administrators who have left the charter school and their reasons for leaving; (v) the number of students enrolled in the charter school eligible for free lunch as defined in section 2 of chapter 70; (vi) the number of students enrolled in the charter school eligible for reduced price lunch as defined in section 2 of chapter 70; (vii) the number of homeless students enrolled in the charter school; (viii) the number of students in the care of the Department of Youth Services enrolled in the charter school;

              SECTION 9.  Said subsection (jj) of said section 89 of said chapter 71, as so appearing, is hereby further amended by striking out, in line 733, the figure “(ii)” and inserting in place thereof the following figure:- (ix).

              SECTION 10.  Said subsection (jj) of said section 89 of said chapter 71, as so appearing, is hereby further amended by inserting after the word “years.”, in line 748, the following sentences:-

              The regulations shall authorize the commissioner to recommend withholding the release of all or some part of the quarterly tuition payments for any school that has not timely filed the required report.  The report shall be filed annually on or before January 1 with the department. 

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