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Wednesday, February 10, 2010 - 11:48am

Two More Districts To Sue State Over Charter Schools

The State Board of Education has upheld recent approvals of charter schools by the state's Charter School Commission. That means two more school districts will be suing the state over charter school funding.

Several local school districts asked the state board to step in after the commission approved schools in their area that they had denied.

Griffin-Spalding County school officials say the charter school approved in their area is too exclusive. Their attorney Tim Shepherd says it shouldn’t draw money from the local district.

"It’s going to be a half million dollar a year issue for our school district because they’ll be withholding a half million dollars of local tax money and sending it to that school."

The state is forcing local districts to fund the charter schools they’ve denied by withholding state funds equivalent to what locals would have given them and giving it to the charter school.

Four districts have sued the state over the funding issue saying its unconstitutional.

Since the board stayed the commission's decision, Griffin-Spalding County will follow suit.

"If the state board approves the granting of the charter we will be filing a lawsuit tomorrow," said Shepherd Wednesday after the board's hearing. "Both the Henry County board and Spalding County board have authorized the suit… we have it ready to go."

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