Today, the Kentucky House of Representatives approved a bill that would allow charter schools to operate in the Bluegrass State for the first time. The legislation, which now goes to the Senate for consideration, would provide more opportunities for families and students to find the best fit for their individual learning needs.
House Bill 520, sponsored by House Education Committee Chairman Bam Carney, would allow public charter schools to open in Kentucky in the 2018-19 school year.
“For more than two decades, public charter schools have been making a difference for students in other states, and it’s past time that Kentucky allow these proven, innovative public schools,” Chairman Carney said in a statement. “My children attended traditional public schools that worked well for them. But one size doesn’t fit all, and I’d like to see every single student in Kentucky attend a school that best meets their needs.”
The bill provides local school boards and the mayors of Louisville and Lexington with the authority to review and approve the opening of public charter schools and allows the State Board of Education to review denials.
“This is great news for Kentucky families. Students are better prepared for success in college, careers and in life when they have opportunities to find the right educational fit for them. We are grateful for Chairman Carney’s leadership and the strong support of a coalition of Kentucky advocates committed to better options for parents and students.” – J. Alex Kelly, ExcelinEd in Action National Legislative Director
A strong coalition of organizations support this legislation, including Americans for Prosperity Kentucky, the Kentucky Chamber, the Kentucky Charter School Project, the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools and ExcelinEd in Action.
If successful, Kentucky would become the 44th state in the nation to authorize charter schools. Today, more than 3 million students attend charter schools in 43 states.