Scott, Feinstein Lead Bipartisan Letter to Protect Charter Schools
WASHINGTON – Today, U.S. Senators Tim Scott (R-S.C.) and Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) wrote a letter to President Biden’s secretary of education, Miguel Cardona, expressing their concerns about a proposed rule from the Department of Education that would jeopardize our nation’s charter schools and limit families’ education options.
“During the 2020-2021 academic year, nearly 240,000 new students enrolled in charter schools, representing a seven percent growth as compared to the previous academic year,” wrote the senators.“This clearly demonstrates how critical the [Charter Schools Program] is, as it is the only federal program dedicated to supporting the creation of new public charter schools, replicating high-quality public charter schools, and disseminating information about effective practices within charter schools. … CSP was designed to provide critical resources to expand access to high-quality charter schools, but these proposed regulations could restrict access to new high-quality public charter schools. As such, we are concerned that the NPP does not prioritize the needs of students and limits high quality choices to certain families.”
The majority of federal funding for charter schools comes from the 28-year-old, bipartisan federal Charter Schools Program (CSP). Despite a 7 percent increase in charter school enrollment throughout the 2020-2021 academic year, the Department of Education recently proposed a rule that would impose burdensome new requirements on charter schools, making it difficult — if not impossible — for many schools to receive funding.
Joining Senators Scott and Feinstein on the letter are Senators Michael Bennet (D-Colo.), Cory Booker (D-N.J.), Bill Cassidy (R-La.), Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), and Richard Burr (R-N.C.), ranking member of the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions.
Read the full letter here.