Second Vote Coming On Charter Amendment

ATLANTA – (AJC/WAOK)   Charter school supporters plan a second attempt Wednesday at persuading the Georgia House to approve legislation asking voters to restore the state’s power to approve charter schools.    Lobbying has been intense since Feb. 8, when a constitutional amendment dealing with charter schools fell 10 votes short of the two-thirds majority needed to pass the House.   The amendment, known officially as House Resolution 1162, was sparked by a May state Supreme Court ruling declaring that the Georgia Charter School Commission had been illegally approving and funding charter schools over local school board objections.    The ruling came in a lawsuit filed by school districts including Gwinnett County Public Schools.    The amendment is being championed in the House by Speaker Pro Tem Jan Jones, R-Milton, and Majority Whip Ed Lindsey, R-Atlanta.    Local school superintendents and school districts vehemently oppose the amendment, which could be before voters later this year.    Rep. Rashad Taylor, D-Atlanta, on Tuesday proposed an alternative constitutional amendment,   House Resolution 1521, setting up the possibility that communities could create a second local board, beyond the local school board, with the power to approve charter schools.


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