Killion Amendment Strengthens State Oversight of Charter, Cyber Charter Schools
HARRISBURG – By a vote of 120-77 this afternoon, the House passed a bill that would reform Pennsylvania’s 15-year-old charter school law to ensure charter and cyber-charter schools have appropriate oversight and accountability.
Rep. Thomas Killion (R-Delaware/Chester) sponsored a key amendment to SB 1115
that strengthens the charter school code by holding the schools more accountable for their performance and funding, prohibits conflicts of interest and ensures they are sufficiently evaluated. Killion’s amendment increases transparency and brings the rules for charter schools closer into line with requirements for public schools. Killion’s amendment:
• Establishes a statewide advisory committee to oversee charter and cyber-charter
schools and make recommendations to the governor and General Assembly.
• Places the authority to grant charters with local school directors.
• Standardizes and streamlines the charter school application and renewal process.
• Provides a template to evaluate and standardize reporting requirements for charter
schools and requires better disclosure of information from charter schools and their
• Requires charter schools to undergo annual audits.
• Requires charter school trustees and employees to adhere to the State Ethics Act
and to submit to annual ethics filings.
• Prohibits boards of trustees from receiving compensation.
“Pennsylvania has more than 140 charter and cyber charter schools, serving more than 100,000 students,” said Killion. “These schools have worked well and have benefitted many Pennsylvania families, particularly those students in low-performing school districts. Over the past several months, members of the General Assembly have worked with stakeholders to update the charter school code and to ensure the highest quality and accountability.”
The amended bill now goes back to the Senate for concurrence.
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State Representative Thomas Killion
168th District, Pennsylvania House of Representatives
Contact: Donna Pinkham