Sunday, October 4, 2009
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Gwinnett Daily Post
Benita Dodd's column ("Lawsuit sets its sights on a school with class," Sept. 27, Page 11A) misstates facts that are the very reason for this litigation.
Last year, all Gwinnett public schools - including Ivy Prep - received equal state funding for their students. State funds did follow the students.
This year, Ivy Prep was approved for additional state funding. This would be fine, except the state took the money for Ivy Prep's increase directly from all other Gwinnett schools, including other charter schools. As a result, Ivy Prep is the only public school in Gwinnett to receive more than state mandated funding, while all other schools receive less than the legally mandated amount. (Yes, state Quality Basic Education funding is a law.)
Dodd notes this amount is small and it is - today. But, what if the Charter Commission opens 10 more schools next year and 10 the year after that? What is now a small percentage will grow to a crippling, multimillion-dollar state funding decrease much sooner than taxpayers may realize.
While questioning the morality of this issue, ask yourself this question: As public schools, why should commission charter schools be funded at a higher rate than all other Georgia public schools?