HB 1159, Institute Charter Schools, sponsored by Rep. Fischer(D-Fort Collins) and Sen. Bacon (D-Fort Collins) has been approved by both houses and has been sent to the Governor for signature. The bill makes it easier for school districts to obtain exclusive chartering authority and removes annual renewal provisions. Further, districts that were denied ECA may remedy and reapply to the State Board. Another new provision requires the CSI applicant to provide evidence that the student population they will serve reflects the community in which the school will be located and a plan for serving that student population.
SB 208, Background Checks, sponsored by Sen. Windels (D-Arvada) and Rep. Benefield (D-Arvada) has been approved by the Senate and was recently amended in the House Education Committee. It's awaiting second reading in the House. The amendments were only technical. This bill codifies current practice for charter schools, which is to conduct a background check on all prospective employees. Further, the legislation requires charter schools to check the CDE database to verify if a prospective employee has been "red flagged" for any reason.