A draft of a bill is in the works to revamp New Jersey's charter law. Sponsored by Assemblyman Diegnan (D-Middlesex) chair of the Assembly Education Committee the legislation would require charter schools to provide more reporting on enrollments and budget information require local voters to approve new schools while expanding the number of organizations approving and overseeing the schools to include up to three colleges or universities.
The draft would also restructure parts of the application process for charter schools and place new requirements on them to annually report and post their enrollment breakdowns and budgets.
Diegnan told NJSpotlight earlier this week that he expected still more changes to come before the bill is formally introduced in May but he hopes his proposals at least start building a consensus on the long-delayed update of New Jersey’s 18-year-old charter school law.
Many of the latest provisions have been proposed before in various bills but each has fallen short of approval in either the Assembly or the Senate or both.
Diegnan also told NJSpotlight that his office was working with Sen. Teresa Ruiz (D-Essex) the Senate education chair who is crafting on her own bill and is considered the Senate point person on the issue.
Diegnan’s draft omits key issues in the charter debate including online or virtual schools and funding.