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EA Board Asks Legislators for Charter Reform

By Dianne Ribecca
The Tube City Almanac
March 15, 2023
Posted in: North Versailles Twp. News

East Allegheny School Board will add its voices to those of other school districts asking the Pennsylvania General Assembly to reform its charter-school funding formula.

The school board by 9-0 vote this week approved a resolution to be sent to the state legislature. School directors said they regard as unfair the method used to calculate how much districts must pay for charter school tuition.

At a committee meeting earlier this month, school directors said the current formulas require school districts to send more money to charter schools than they need to operate their programs, significantly burdening each district’s resources and taxpayers.

In addition, they say that the charter school funding formula for regular and special education in a charter school is outdated and that when the state legislature enacted the formula in 1997, it was based on a calculation to fund school districts, not charter schools. Therefore, basing funding on the school district’s expenditures instead of what it actually costs to educate a child in a charter school is unfair, school directors said.

In other business

The school board approved memorandums of understanding for the 2023-24 with North Versailles Twp. Police Department, the East McKeesport Police Department, the Pitcairn Police Department and BusPatrol America LLC.

School officials said the purpose of the memorandums is to establish procedures to follow when specific incidents outlined in the MOU occur on the school’s property, during school activities, or on the bus. In addition, invitations were extended to the chiefs of all three departments to attend the upcoming school board meeting.

BusPatrol America provides equipment that takes photos and records incidents when a motorist drives around a school bus that has activated its red warning lights and is discharging students.

The board approved designating “local holidays” on Sept. 4, Nov. 10, Nov. 24, Dec. 26 and March 29, 2024. Under Pennsylvania’s school code, local holidays may be cancelled as necessary to make up for snow days or other weather emergencies.

School directors accepted the resignation of Jawan Bryant as assistant varsity football coach.

The school board holds its next committee meeting at 7 p.m. April 3 at the district offices, 1150 Jacks Run Road. The next regular meeting is April 10.

Dianne Ribecca is program director of Tube City Online Radio, host of the Consumer Review Report podcast, and a member of the board of directors of Tube City Community Media Inc. She may be reached at dmribecca@gmail.com

Originally published March 15, 2023.

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