The North Carolina Public Schools Charter Advisory Council has recommended 25 charter schools to the State Board of Education for consideration at its August meeting. The Charter Advisory Council received 63 applications to open charter schools and then selected 30 applicants from that pool for interviews last week. The Charter Advisory Council then recommended 25 of these 30 interviewees to the State Board of Education for approval.
Many of the recommended applicants will face questions on review before the State Board that were not resolved before the Charter Advisory Council, particularly around the procurement of facilities, transportation plans, and more specifics about instruction. The State Board must consider the impact on local districts of a rapid expansion in the number of charter schools: If all 25 recommendations are accepted, that number could increase by more than 33% within the next year when coupled with the 9 fast-track charter applications that the State Board recently approved.
This expansion could also cause a significant strain on already limited charter school oversight and accountability in the absence of additional staffing, as there are currently only 6 staff members overseeing all of the charter schools in the state (4 of whom are consultants).