Bill proposing cuts to charter school funding has potential impacts on SWLA

Published: Jul. 23, 2021 at 9:39 PM CDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

Lake Charles, LA (KPLC) - A new bill proposed by the House Appropriation Committee would cut federal funding from charter schools by the millions.

That proposed bill would cut federal funding for charter schools by $40 million which could also limit some schools from receiving federal funding altogether.

The President of the Board of Trustees Gene Thibodeaux believes that the bill is focused on schools that contract with for-profit operators.

“It’s aimed at, quite frankly, suppressing the five million students who attend charters schools and suppressing their desire for the freedom to go to any school that they wish,” Thibodeaux said.

Thibodeaux said the bill, if passed, would have a direct impact on the charter schools here in SWLA.

“We have three schools in Lake Charles that happen to contract with Charter Schools USA, a profit operator. It’s a bill that would propose 40% decrease in funding, although there’s a 40% increase in education funding. I think this bill is aimed at punishing charter schools that contract with for-profit operators,” Thibodeaux said.

If the bill does pass, the charter schools here in Southwest Louisiana would be forced to make a decision.

“We would have to choose between, ‘do we want to continue our relationship with this for-profit company or do we end that relationship so that we may continue to receive federal funds,’” said Thibodeaux.

Although he’s confident the bill won’t pass, he still doesn’t understand why they’re being targeted.

“So, it’s unfair. Particularly since a charter school is a public school. It’s simply a different kind of public school,” Thibodeaux said.

The bill was proposed by democrats who believe a large amount of money funded to charter schools takes away from other public school students.

As it stands, it’s simply a proposal that has yet to have made it in front of full congress.

Copyright 2021 KPLC. All rights reserved.