Bills and resolutions introduced on state approval of charter schools

January 19, 2016

Several bills and resolutions have been introduced to schedule a referendum in the next election on November 8. The referendum would be on the questions of whether Virginia’s Constitution should be amended to allow Virginia’s Board of Education (BOE) to establish charter schools subject to any criteria and conditions prescribed by the General Assembly.

For its 2016 Legislative Program, VACo adopted a position opposing authority by Virginia’s School Board to establish charter schools. Approval of charter schools should be the sole responsibility of local school boards. The three chief measures for scheduling a referendum on charter schools are HB 3 (Robert Bell), SJ 6 (Obenshain) and SJ 93 (Obenshain).

The first step toward a Constitutional amendment took place last year when the General Assembly passed HJR 577 (Robert Bell). Constitutional amendments are only approved after they are passed in two successive General Assembly sessions with an intervening election and subsequently receive majority votes in a popular referendum.

VACo Contact: Larry Land, CAE

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