Senate upholds local control for charter schools

 charter schools virginia general assemblyThe Senate Privileges and Elections Committee declined to report Del. Rob Bell’s (R-Charlottesville) House equivalents of Sen. Mark Obenshain’s (R-Rockingham) and Sen. David Suetterlein’s (R-Roanoke) charter schools proposal. As a result, the proposed constitutional amendment will not appear on voters’ ballots this fall.

Said Senator Janet Howell (D-Fairfax), “We have already debated this at length in the Senate, and the Senate has already voted down the proposal. Localities and parents need to maintain control over whether or not to develop a charter school program. The proposed measures took that power away. That is not the way to strengthen public education in Virginia.”

Said Senator Donald McEachin (D-Henrico), “We have a duty to provide the best possible quality of education to our children, and our locally elected school boards are best placed to know what that looks like. We need to keep these kinds of decisions in their hands.”

Del. Bell’s HB 3 and HJ 1 had passed the House 50-48 and 52-47 respectively. Their Senate counterparts, Sen. Obenshain’s SJ 6 and Sens. Suetterlein’s and Obenshain’s SB 588 and SJ 93, were rejected by the Senate earlier this month.

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