AUSTIN – State Senator Donna Campbell appeared with public charter school parents, who presented thousands of letters in support of increased facility funding for charter schools, at a press conference at the Capitol on Tuesday. The press conference highlighted Senate Bill 457 and the fact that public charter schools don’t currently receive any facility funding from the state.
“Charter school students in Texas are treated as public school students in every regard except for their funding. This existing funding gap penalizes families who want to exercise their freedom to select the best school within the public education system,” Senator Campbell explained. “SB 457 will narrow the existing funding gap by 50% and help create classroom space to relieve the 140,000 students stuck on charter school waiting lists.”
Currently, public charter schools receive $0.00 in direct state funds for facilities while their traditional public school counter parts receive nearly $1,400 a year per student. As a result, public charter schools must utilize their maintenance and operations funds, which are intended for classroom instruction, to cover the costs of both operations and facilities.
“The value of a quality education is too important – to the child, their family, and the state – to leave these children waiting in limbo.” said Senator Campbell. “I filed SB 457 because every child deserves access to an education to meet their specific needs.”
The press conference was also attended by Representatives Bohac, Dutton, and Simmons, who have filed companion legislation in the Texas House.
State Senator Donna Campbell chairs the Veteran Affairs and Border Security Committee and is a member of the Education Committee.