PA needs REAL funding and accountability reforms for cyber charter schools

It is past time for Pennsylvania lawmakers to enact funding reforms that will protect taxpayers from the flagrant waste and abuse of taxpayer money by cyber charter schools.

Each year, Pennsylvania school districts spend $1 billion on student tuition bills for cyber charter schools. The state no longer provides a reimbursement for these costs, so most of this funding comes from property taxes raised at the district level.

Because state law mandates that the tuition school districts pay cyber charter schools far exceeds the cost of educating students at home on a computer, cyber charter schools are awash in excess money that they waste.

And the evidence of this waste is in plain sight.
Money intended to be spent educating children is instead spent on billboards, TV commercials, internet ads, and expensive mailing pieces. Public relations firms, lobbyists, and the CEOS and shareholders of private management companies profit from property tax dollars they receive from cyber charter schools. Some cyber charter schools have so much excess funding that they can spend millions purchasing real estate and create huge asset hoards.

This is wrong. The current funding system hurts students and communities.

In order to pay cyber charter tuition bills, school districts must raise property taxes, cut teachers, or eliminate programs for students.

State lawmakers MUST take action this year to rein in overpayments to cyber charter schools.

Pennsylvanians’ property taxes should be invested in educating students, not wasted on advertising, gift cards, and lucrative contracts or packed into cyber charter asset hoards.

Tell your state lawmakers to enact funding reforms that will more closely match the tuition districts pay to cyber charter schools with the actual cost of an online education.

The legislature’s continued failure to take action on this issue puts at risk our public schools’ potential to deliver a quality education for all.

Please contact your state lawmakers today to urge them to support cyber charter funding reforms in the budget this year.

Sponsored by
Harrisburg, PA