Do Cyber-Charter Schools Need Covid Relief Money?
Script: I strongly object to Covid Relief money going to Cyber-Charter Schools which do not have the added expenses of brick-and-mortar schools. Physical schools need to disinfect and supply barriers for student and teacher safety. Charter-cyber schools have no need for new enhancements and any money that has previously been allocated, should be returned.
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If you own property, you pay school taxes! Currently an inappropriate and unethical distribution of your money goes to cyber charter schools. In a normal school year, cyber schools are paid the same number of your tax dollars per student as are used by the brick-and-mortar buildings we all see every day.
But in pandemic times, brick-and-mortar schools have received a small fraction of what they need to safely educate children while cybers, which have not had to adjust anything have already received enormous amounts of money. Cyber charters do not have the moral responsibility to keep students and teachers Covid-safe. Our traditional schools are experiencing enormous costs and need the help.
Adjustments need to be made now, before more money is inappropriately designated for cyber-charter schools.
The problem must be addressed by both state and national elected officials. But with the potential of new federal funds coming in the near future, now it the time to share your concerns with Senators Casey and Toomey and Representative Perry or Representative Meuser since that money will come through Title 1 funding.
However, there is also a huge PA state component as to how cyber-charters are funded. And, the key point is that it does NOT cost that much (or doesn’t need to cost that much) to educate a student in a virtual platform.
Up until this year, the Capital Area On-Line Program for students who wanted virtual learning and cost one district about one-half what it cost per student as it did for in-house education. An in-depth study of the numbers of administrators, salaries of those administrators, expenses for advertising their “free public education” on TV and radio (also paid for by taxpayer dollars) must be studied and corrected.
This is not a matter of public-school leaders “whining” and not wanting competition or choice. It is only about fair and appropriate funding…which the current model is neither. Please contact state Senator DiSanto or the 48th senate district office and Representative Mehaffie, Ryan, or Diamond to express your concerns.