Georgia Charter School Amendment

Ballot Question on November 6

Georgia’s Charter School Debate

By: Sen. Steve Gooch (R-Dahlonega)

This upcoming general election, you will notice two proposed Constitutional Amendments on the ballot. If voters approve by a simple majority, these items will become part of our state Constitution.

Let’s turn our attention to Amendment 1. This amendment would set a precedent for education reform by reinstating the state’s authority to authorize charter schools through the Georgia Charter School Commission. In addition, it would allow Georgia the same flexibility that 34 other states already have for authorizing state-run charter programs.

In 2011, the Georgia Supreme Court ruled that the Georgia Charter School Commission, the entity charged with authorizing state-run charter schools, was unconstitutional. However, there is a growing consensus across the nation that a single-purpose board or commission is the best practice for charter school authorization. 

The charter commission will be no different from the State Board of Education, which is an appointed body that currently has the authority to set high school graduation requirements, set curriculum standards and allocate funds appropriated by the General Assembly.  Read entire press release

Follow the money for anti-charter amendment campaign, too
 October 26, 2012, by Kyle Wingfield - AJC

There’s a logical explanation for the bitter opposition to the charter-schools amendment. Just ask Edward Lindsey, the Buckhead Republican who serves as House majority whip.

“This isn’t about ideology,” Lindsey says. “It’s about turf. It’s about those folks who have a vested interest, no matter how mediocre the present may be, in not changing.”

The turf in question is the power to approve charter schools — and thus how some public education funds are spent. Amendment One would empower the state to create charter schools in two instances. The first is for statewide charters; think virtual schools that teach online courses.

The other is when a local school board denies a charter application. The state could then conduct its own review and decide whether to approve and fund the school.

 Who considers those powers an invasion of their own turf? Follow the money. Read more


Yes to charter schools 
by  Erick Erickson on   - Erickson of , Cnn Contributor and Atlanta radio host

On Nov. 6, voters will be asked whether the state should be able to approve charter schools. Yes the state should. You should vote yes.

Charter school opponents make two rather bold claims. The first is that this should be a local issue. The second is that public schools are already hurting financially.

According to the opponents, we should trust local governments to decide whether or not a charter school should be started. Follow the logic here with me. It is quite rich. Charter school opponents believe the very same school systems that are failing our children should be the sole authority on creating their own competition. In other words, Superintendent Romain Dallemand should be the point person on whether or not a competitor to his Macon Miracle should crop up. - Read much more

Oct. 29, 2012.  Wish that everyone could have heard Erick Erickson on 750 a.m. radio this evening talking about why he is voting YES.   Very convincing!  (VRG Editor)


Johns Creek High School  - Voter Information Night and Candidate Forum
Leaders Debate Charter School Amendment  - October 23, 2012

Supporters and opponents of Georgia's charter school amendment, on the ballot this November, pleaded their cases at a voter info forum held at Johns Creek High School on Tuesday evening.Amendment 1, or HR 1162, would give a state-appointed commission authority to authorize and fund state charter schools if voters approve the legislation, or vote "Yes," on Nov. 6.  Read more in Johns Creek Patch and view video

Left: Representing the "Yes" vote were Gwinnett businessman BJ Van Gundy, State Rep. Lynne Riley (R-District 50) and State Rep. Mike Dudgeon (R-District 24).


State Rep. Jan Jones on HR 1162 - Charter School Amendment

Click on video at left to hear why Rep. Jan Jones is voting YES on the Charter School

Read Letter from State Representative Jan Jones Regarding the Charter School Amendment.

. . . "By voting yes for public charter schools and passing the constitutional amendment in November, Georgians will give more parents the individual freedom to select a public charter school when they decide it best fits their child’s needs. That’s putting local control where it counts the most—with parents."

Representative Jan Jones (R-46)
Speaker Pro-Tempore, Georgia House of Representatives