Lawsuit attacks Mississippi law helping charter schools with local taxes | Arkansas Blog

Sunday, August 12, 2018

Lawsuit attacks Mississippi law helping charter schools with local taxes

Posted By on Sun, Aug 12, 2018 at 8:22 AM

Diane Ravitch reports on the Southern Poverty Law Center's lawsuit attacking a Mississippi law that forces local school districts to give some of their local property tax money to charter schools.

Interesting. And though it is not directly relevant in Arkansas, it is perhaps closer to relevancy than it might appear.

For now, it's clear Arkansas charter schools may not tap local property taxes. Charter school advocates complain bitterly about this. The Arkansas legislature, however, has forced Arkansas school districts to turn over surplus buildings built by local tax dollars to charter schools whether they want to or not. Does this break legally from the requirement that the property tax go only to the school district for which it was voted?  That might be a stretch for old buildings long paid for, I grant you.

But what if, for example, the Walton forces succeed in a past plan to allow privatization of the entire Little Rock school district, its schools all privately operated with public money in buildings on which bonded debt is still being repaid by school district taxpayers? What if this happens in a district without democratic representation, which is currently the case in the state-run district?


For the record, the relevant portion of the Arkansas Constitution is virtually identical to the Mississippi constitutional provision the Southern Poverty Law Center is invoking.

No tax levied pursuant to subsection (c)(1) of this section shall be appropriated to any other district than that for which it is levied.
Words to think about as the charter school forces continue their attack on the Little Rock School District.

The charter schools already are harming districts by taking students, legal or not.

Writes Ravitch:

Charter schools across the nation are diverting funds from local district schools, whose boards have no authority over the charters, which are independent of the district.

Why should 90% of children suffer budget cuts so that 10% of the children may attend a charter school?

That is why this case might have national implications and encourage activists to fight to keep their taxes devoted to their district schools.

Tags: , , , ,


Favorite

Comments (4)

Showing 1-4 of 4

Add a comment

 
Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-4 of 4

Add a comment

More by Max Brantley

Readers also liked…

  • Women's March planned in Arkansas to mark Trump inauguration

    Speaking of Donald Trump and in answer to a reader's question: There will be a women's march in Arkansas on Jan. 21, the day after inauguration, as well as the national march planned in Washington.
    • Dec 30, 2016
  • Your daily dose of Jason Rapert

    Sen. Jason Rapert really, really didn't like it when a KATV reporter asked him about the hypocrisy of his political arguments.
    • Feb 4, 2017
  • Campus gun bill clears committee

    The so-called compromise amendment that will allow anyone 25 or older with a training certificate carry a concealed weapon on public college campuses was approved in a Senate committee this afternoon.
    • Feb 21, 2017

Most Viewed

Most Recent Comments

Slideshows

 

© 2018 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation