ASSEMBLY, No. 2647

STATE OF NEW JERSEY

216th LEGISLATURE

INTRODUCED FEBRUARY 20, 2014

 


 

Sponsored by:

Assemblywoman† VALERIE VAINIERI HUTTLE

District 37 (Bergen)

 

 

 

 

SYNOPSIS

†††† Establishes maximum payment to virtual charter schools and requires State to pay portion of costs for first five years.

 

CURRENT VERSION OF TEXT

†††† As introduced.

††


An Act concerning funding of virtual charter schools and amending P.L.1995, c.426.

 

†††† Be It Enacted by the Senate and General Assembly of the State of New Jersey:

 

†††† 1.††† Section 12 of P.L.1995, c.426 (C.18A:36A-12) is amended to read as follows:

†††† 12.† a. (Deleted by amendment, P.L.2007, c.260).

†††† b.††† [The] (1) In the case of a student enrolled in a charter school that is not a virtual charter school, the school district of residence shall pay directly to the charter school for each student enrolled in the charter school who resides in the district an amount equal to 90% of the sum of the budget year equalization aid per pupil and the prebudget year general fund tax levy per pupil inflated by the CPI rate most recent to the calculation.† In addition, the school district of residence shall pay directly to the charter school the security categorical aid attributable to the student and a percentage of the district's special education categorical aid equal to the percentage of the district's special education students enrolled in the charter school and, if applicable, 100% of preschool education aid.† The district of residence shall also pay directly to the charter school any federal funds attributable to the student.

†††† (2) In the case of a student enrolled in a virtual charter school, the school district of residence shall pay directly to the virtual charter school for each student enrolled in the virtual charter school† who resides in the district the lesser of the actual cost per pupil of the virtual charter school, as approved annually by the commissioner, or an amount equal to 90% of the sum of the budget year equalization aid per pupil and the prebudget year general fund tax levy per pupil inflated by the CPI rate most recent to the calculation.† In addition, the school district of residence shall pay directly to the virtual charter school a percentage of the district's special education categorical aid equal to the percentage of the district's special education students enrolled in the virtual charter school.

†††† c.††† (Deleted by amendment, P.L.2007, c.260).

†††† d.††† Notwithstanding the provisions of subsection b. of this section [,]:

†††† (1) in the case of a student who is enrolled in a charter school, including a virtual charter school, and who was not included in the district's projected resident enrollment for the school year, the State shall pay 100% of the amount required pursuant to subsection b. of this section for the first year of the student's enrollment in the charter school;

†††† (2) in the case of a student who is enrolled in a virtual charter school that does not receive a per pupil amount equal to its actual cost per pupil, and who was included in the districtís projected resident enrollment for the school year, the State shall pay to the virtual charter school, on behalf of the school district of residence, 100% of the per pupil amount of the general fund tax levy due to the virtual charter school in its first year of operation, 80% of the per pupil amount of the general fund tax levy due in its second year of operation, 60% of the per pupil amount of the general fund tax levy due in its third year of operation, 40% of the per pupil amount of the general fund tax levy due in its fourth year of operation, 20% of the per pupil amount due in its fifth year of operation, and 0% of the per pupil amount of the general fund tax levy due in each subsequent year.† The school district of residence shall pay the difference in the per pupil amount of the general fund tax levy, the equalization aid per pupil, and the applicable amount of special education categorical aid to the virtual charter school in each year; and

†††† (3) in the case of a student who is enrolled in a virtual charter school that receives a per pupil amount equal to its actual cost per pupil, the per pupil amount shall first be paid by the State in an amount not to exceed 90% of the districtís prebudget year general fund tax levy per pupil inflated by the CPI rate most recent to the calculation, multiplied by the corresponding percentage established in the payment schedule pursuant to paragraph (2) of this subsection.† The school district of residence shall pay the difference in the per pupil amount to the virtual charter school in each year .

†††† e.††† The State shall make payments required pursuant to subsection d. of this section directly to the charter school.

†††† f. As used in this section, ďvirtual charter schoolĒ means a charter school in which all or a portion of the instruction is provided through means of the Internet, and the students enrolled in and instructional staff employed by the school are geographically remote from each other.

(cf: P.L.2007, c.260, s.58)

 

†††† 2.††† This act shall take effect immediately, and shall first apply to the first full school year beginning after the effective date of this act.

 

 

STATEMENT

 

†††† This bill provides a mechanism for funding virtual charter schools.† Under current law, a charter school receives, from the school district of residence, an amount equal 90% of the tax levy per pupil, adjusted for inflation, and equalization aid per pupil.† A charter school also receives security aid attributable to the student, a share of the districtís special education aid equal to the percent of the districtís special education students who are enrolled in the charter school, preschool education aid, and federal funds attributable to the student.

†††† The bill provides that a virtual charter school will receive the lesser of its actual cost per pupil, as approved by the Commissioner of Education, or 90% of the sum of general fund tax levy per pupil, adjusted for inflation, and equalization aid per pupil.† The virtual charter school would also receive a share of the districtís special education categorical aid equal to the percent of the districtís special education students who are enrolled in the virtual charter school.

†††† The bill also requires that the State pay a share of the payment to be made by the school district of residence to the virtual charter school during the first five years that the virtual charter school is in operation.† In the case of a virtual charter school that receives funding based on the school district of residenceís general fund tax levy per pupil amount and equalization aid per pupil amount, the State would be required to pay 100% of the general fund tax levy per pupil amount in the first year of the virtual charter schoolís operation, with the State share declining by 20 percentage points in each subsequent year.† In the case of a virtual charter school that receives a per pupil amount equal to its actual cost per pupil, the per pupil amount would first be paid by the State in an amount not to exceed 90% of the resident school districtís prebudget year general fund tax levy per pupil, inflated by the CPI, multiplied by the same declining percentage payment schedule.