Letter to Governor Spitzer

Letter to Governor Spitzer

Over the past decade, the State of New York has made the right moves to ensure a system of high quality public charter schools. Several provisions found in Assembly Bill 4307-B approved earlier this week would do serious damage to that record of quality:

  • It eliminates the State University system as an authorizer of new public schools ignoring their outstanding track record of approving and overseeing high quality schools;
  • It drastically cuts funding for existing charter schools harming the quality of instruction to almost 23,000 children; and
  • It mandates the unionization of the charter workforce, imposing work rules that would impinge on innovation.

The National Association of Charter School Authorizers (NACSA) must express its opposition to these provisions because they would harm the quality of education provided to children attending these public charter schools. As a professional organization of charter school authorizers and other educational leaders, NACSA is dedicated to achieving high quality charter schools through high standards and clear accountability.

We believe that the people of New York and their representatives want to provide high quality educational opportunities for their children. The Assembly’s action fails to recognize that the state’s charter schools play an important role in providing these opportunities.

The state’s charter authorizers, particularly the State University of New York (SUNY) have cemented a well deserved national reputation as an outstanding authorizer of charter schools. They have developed a set of standards and practices to ensure that high quality public charter schools are available to the families of New York. These practices in areas of application selection, oversight and renewal are among the best in the nation. They have approached their responsibility carefully and thoughtfully, and should be lauded for their efforts, not hampered.

We thank you for your commitment to provide the best possible education for the children of New York and hope that this will continue to guide you during the upcoming budget negotiations.

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