Friday, January 2nd, 2009
Here’s an odd article in the paper this morning called Charter School’s Preschool at Risk. It’s an example of dropped balls and waste regarding licensing law and categories. For several reasons.
The issue has swept Jumoke into a legal battle that could have ramifications for all charter schools in the state. Although under state law charter schools are now subject to the licensing process for day-care programs, they usually did not seek a license because they assumed that, like public and private schools, they were exempt, Sharpe said.
Reasons are provided how the issue erupted:
State law says day-care programs run by a public school system or a private school acknowledged by the state Department of Education don’t need a license to operate.
That law would seem to allow day-care programs run by charter schools. But a different law defines charter schools as “public, nonsectarian school(s) … operated independently of any local or regional board of education” — thus making them a separate entity from public or private schools.
One answer is to require a license. The other is cut and paste the language of exemption from public schools to charter schools and to justify the shift without muddling the categories. But CT will take the more painful route of adding a licensing burden to charter schools, mucking up simplicity, and complicating attitudes against “regulation.”
In any event, why did the charter schools “assume”? And why did the state overlook the subject in the first place? Why are public schools exempt from licenses?