| News

Larger text Larger text Smaller text Smaller text | Order Photo Reprints

Complaints follow charter school's testing rules

Email Newsletters

Click here to sign up for one of our email newsletters.

Daily Photo Galleries

By The Associated Press
Saturday, Oct. 6, 2012, 8:18 p.m.

HARRISBURG — Public school officials are criticizing state Education Secretary Ron Tomalis for changing the rules for testing student achievement in charter schools.

In a story published Friday, officials told The Morning Call in Allentown that the changes made it easier for the privately run, publicly funded charter schools to meet state benchmarks for academic progress under the federal No Child Left Behind law.

They also criticized Tomalis for making the change for the 2011-12 school year without getting required federal approval.

Education Department spokesman Tim Eller says the new rules treat charter schools like school districts for the purpose of judging their performance, because both serve multiple-grade populations.

Eller labeled the change “routine” and said federal approval is anticipated.

“In the department's view, it's all about hairsplitting,” he said Friday.

The Pennsylvania School Boards Association said the move violates requirements in the federal law that every public school be evaluated in the same way and that all students in a school be held accountable for its achievement.

Stuart Knade, chief counsel for the school boards group, said the change could confuse parents and give the Legislature the false impression that charter schools outperform public schools.

Subscribe today! Click here for our subscription offers.



Show commenting policy

Most-Read Stories

  1. Solarize Allegheny powers up with more communities
  2. LaBar: Sting making history fighting for WWE title
  3. No certainty for Pirates’ call-up veterans
  4. RB Williams believes he’s making seamless transition to Steelers
  5. Rossi: Continuing legend of Pirate Ray
  6. Morton inconsistent, Pirates’ bats go quiet in 5-0 loss to Rockies
  7. Vintage drive-in theaters’ prices, upgrades still draw in Western Pa.
  8. Presidential hopeful Sanders gains ground on Clinton in Iowa poll
  9. Big plays cost Steelers defense in preseason loss at Bills
  10. NFL notebook: Redskins torn over QB Griffin’s fate
  11. Record-holding female motorcyclist to speak at Lincoln Highway event