Georgia Governor Signs Facilities Law
Georgia Charter Schools Association applauds Gov. Nathan Deal for signing House Bill 430 on Thursday. Under the new law, charter schools will receive dedicated facilities funding for the first time in Georgia’s history.
HB 430 also creates new minimum standards for districts that authorize charter schools. The provisions included in House Bill 430 were based on recommendations made by the Governor’s Education Reform Commission in 2015 and are strongly supported by the Georgia Charter Schools Association and numerous education reform organizations.
“The children in Georgia’s charter schools deserve the same level of funding and support as all other public school students,” said Georgia Charter Schools Association President and CEO Tony Roberts. “This is a significant step to realizing that goal. We want to thank Gov. Deal, HB 430 sponsor Buzz Rep. Brockway and Senate and House cosponsors for putting Georgia’s students first.”
House Bill 430 will create a new $100,000 annual block grant for every public charter school to use towards their facility needs pending legislative budget inclusion. The bill also clarifies how federal title funds are distributed. “This law is a step forward in receiving the funding equity our children deserve,” said Tybee Island Maritime Academy Principal Patrick Rossiter. Currently, Georgia’s public charter schools receive as much as 47 percent less funding than traditional public schools, yet they are required to meet the same standards. As originally introduced, House Bill 430 would have addressed that significant inequity. However before the legislation gained full House approval, the main provision of the bill that would have closed the funding gap was removed.
“Full funding equity for Georgia’s public charter school students continues to be our number one priority,” said Roberts.