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Charter School Participation Increases in Upper St. Clair

The superintendent expressed frustration Monday night.

The Upper St. Clair School Board reviewed the increasing costs of cyber charter and charter schools Monday night.

In 2007-08, the district had to pay more than $80,000 in charter school tuition for 10 Upper St. Clair students.

In 2011-12, the district had to spend more than $285,000 in charter school tuition for 29 Upper St. Clair students.

Two of the students in 2011-12 were in special education cyber charter school programs.

Home-schooled students switching to cyber schools might be attributing to the increase of charter school students in Upper St. Clair, Superintendent Patrick O'Toole said.

The district must pay tuition for the students who decide to go to charter school instead of Upper St. Clair schools, according to Upper St. Clair School District administrators. The district also loses out on state funding for the charter students.

O'Toole expressed frustration—calling it a "broken funding structure."

"Then a lot of that money goes to (charter school) advertising to recruit more students," he said.

Charter students must also be allowed to participate in Upper St. Clair School District athletics.

The charter school tuition rates are established by the Pennsylvania Department of Education each year, and are based on each school district's finances, according to the USC administrators.

The board reviewed the numbers while preparing for the 2013-14 school budget.

Related Content: Patch Poll: Should PA School Districts Revoke Charters of Underperforming Charter Schools?

Roger February 17, 2013 at 12:59 AM
Guest, still waiting for an answer to the question posted to you. Thank you.
Roger February 17, 2013 at 01:00 AM
Martin, still waiting for answers posed to you about comments you made in your post. Thank you.
Cyberschool Mom February 18, 2013 at 10:44 AM
When people start complaining about the cost of cyber schools it sounds as if they are more concerned about money that the success of students. I took my kids out of public school because they were being held back. Now they are able to work at their own pace and we still have full time access to qualified teachers who keep us (parents and students) accountable, teach on line courses and grade assignments. The public school system does not work for every child and tax paying parents should be given an option to find something that works for their child rather than be forced into a monopoly that has very little incentive to change the way they do things. As for advertizing, our principle at PAVCS just explained to us last week that the state requires that there is proof of equal access to the school - so they HAVE to advertize, by law.
bob balmer February 18, 2013 at 12:52 PM
Becky, In this neighborhood everything is connected to IB
Eric Fischer March 21, 2013 at 07:10 PM
What about the cafeteria at the high school being called a "nutrition" center? I don't understand that at all? Probably because of the IB program or the charter schools.

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