City of Saint Louis Joins Charter School Fight
Saint Louis charter schools received good news earlier this month: the City of Saint Louis is taking their side in a lawsuit with the Saint Louis Public Schools regarding more than $50 million in local tax revenue.
In the lawsuit, which was filed in April, SLPS contends that charter schools should not have access to funds from a special sales tax levied for school desegregation programs because they were not mentioned in the original agreement when the tax was passed. You can read Mike McShane’s full explanation of the lawsuit here. As Mike wrote in April, “Depending on the outcome, this case could financially cripple the city’s charter schools and jeopardize the education of the more than 10,000 students who attend them.”
According to the Post-Dispatch, the city’s brief argues that the 1998 law authorizing charter schools and the law authorizing the sales tax were both a part of the state’s efforts to desegregate public schools. Thus, the revenue from the tax was intended to fund traditional public schools and charter schools alike. While there has not been a final ruling on the lawsuit, the support of the City of Saint Louis is a big win for charter schools.