Charter school, voucher bills filed
by Allison Ross
March 2, 2013
As widely expected, Republican legislators in both the Kentucky House and Senate have submitted bills just before the filing deadlines to try to bring charter schools to the commonwealth.
In addition, Rep. Addia Wuchner, R-Burlington, has filed a bill that would create a school voucher-like program allowing special needs students to redirect per-pupil public school funding to pay for private schools or private tutoring.
Efforts to bring vouchers and charter schools to the Bluegrass State have been going on for years, but with a new Republican governor that has championed charter schools and vouchers and a House that could be moving closer to Republican control, the chances seem greater compared to recent years that such legislation could pass.
Tuesday was the last day for House members to file bills this session, and Thursday is the last day for Senate members to do so.
The charter school bill filed Tuesday by Sen. Mike Wilson, R-Bowling Green, is similar to those he’s filed in previous years.
The bill, SB 253, would essentially create a five-year pilot charter school program in Jefferson and Fayette counties, with a maximum of two charter schools allowed to open per year in each county. It would create a “Kentucky Public Charter School Commission,” which would have members appointed by the governor and could approve charter applications and provide oversight.