NYOS Charter School

Executive Director's Corner

 

 

June 2017

 

As the school year concluded at the end of May, I was glad once again to be part of the amazing community that is NYOS Charter School. The students continue to inspire and encourage me and others at NYOS to do our best work.

 

The end of May also brought to a close the 2017 Texas state legislative session. NYOS worked closely with the Texas Charter Schools Association to advocate for charter school priorities. The legislature successfully passed two significant priorities, Senate Bill 1480 and House Bill 2442. 

 

  • SB 1480 directly advances the strategic objective of increasing the number of students enrolled in Texas charter schools. It will provide an estimated additional $3 billion in capacity to the Permanent School Fund (PSF) to guarantee the financing of public charter schools. This means more high quality public charter school seats for Texas students and millions of dollars in savings for public charter schools. Should NYOS qualify for the PSF guarantee, it would mean significant savings for financing the new property on Lamar Blvd.

 

  • HB 2442 protects the funding of about 110 public charter school campuses, including NYOS, that enroll nearly 21,000 students. During the 84th Legislative Session in 2015, the legislature passed a law with the unintended consequence of reducing the funding for public charter schools with unique programs, often serving vulnerable student populations. With the passage of HB 2442, the funding of these schools is safeguarded.

 

We had hoped the legislature would make a difference to the $1,400 gap in facilities funding between charter schools and traditional public schools. While this top legislative priority was not achieved, it went further in the legislative process than any prior session.

 

The legislature may take up other bills that impact charters in the special session called for July 2017. Any bill that adds funds to public schools in Texas will benefit NYOS, too. We are watching carefully to see if we can expect additional funding next school year.

 

Best wishes to all for a relaxing and peaceful summer break. I look forward to welcoming everyone back in July.

 

Kathleen Zimmermann

Executive Director

NYOS Charter School