Monday, June 04, 2007

CCSD: James Island Charter and Sour Grapes

Just out of reach but sooo enticing! Those are the grapes just out of reach of the fox in Aesop's fable, just as the $4 million reserve created by James Island Charter High School is just out of reach of CCSD. Drat! They can even see it just over the Ashley River.

According to Don Kennedy and CCSD board members, who can't get their hands on the charter school's reserve, those are SOUR grapes; at least the analogy seems appropriate for remarks reported in yesterday's P & C. Some CCSD board members are "rais[ing] their eyebrows and asking questions about oversight."

Is this a joke? Hillery Douglas thinks the reserve is "ridiculous" and accuses the charter school of "squirrelling away millions of taxpayer dollars without input from elected boards who oversee spending." Yes, Hillery, that's true. You can't (thank goodness) oversee what the charter school does with its funds; the state does that.

In another example of reporting only HALF of the story, Courrege stated that the "state funding requirement for charter schools allotted James Island High over $3 million more the year after it converted to a charter school." Yes, that's because the district was forced by state law to give JICHS as much as it was doling out to its non-charter high schools. The purpose clearly is to prevent school districts from starving out charter schools. In this case it ended the diet that JICHS had endured over a number of years. No wonder they wanted a charter high school.

Now the district seems to think that the charter school is SAVING TOO MUCH MONEY. Guffaws must have been echoing all over the Lowcountry when taxpayers read THAT complaint.

James Island Charter High School is making the district look bad. CCSD and its Board of Trustees can't do anything about it. That's all that's going on here.


Anonymous said...

Dist.20 residents should read this post carefully & consider it when they have a chance to ask questions at CCSD's budget hearing tonite. It's scheduled for Burke's auditorium at 5:15, I think, & it's the last one before they take a final vote on the 2007-08 budget. It's important to see which superintendent is in charge of next year's funding plan.

Dist. 20 parent said...

From the Dist. 20 Families group website: "Please note that CCSD did not list the CCSD annual budget meeting Monday June 4th at Burke!!"

Correction to notice above: TODAY Monday, June 4, at "5:00 pm...Public forum...2007-08 School District Budget...cafeteria at Burke HS...244 President St." **

** This was found buried deep within CCSD's media line and not on the front page of any recent postings that include many other school district related meetings. Do you think they want us to miss this?

Copy this information about the forum and pass it along. Let them tell us how they intend to pay to fix our downtown schools. This is on the record and should be one of the few times we are allowed limited interaction with our school board members and the only time we may be allowed to have any diologue.

Anonymous said...

CCSD is still saying at the budget forums that charter schools are "taking money away from other programs". Who's pushing this crap and why are we accepting it?

Anonymous said...

The $4m fund balance enjoyed by James Island Charter High School has little, if anything, to do with great fiscal management on the part of the school. The P&C article offers a few examples of how the school has spent more money than it used to. And yet there is money left over. This fund balance is not the result of great financial acumen. It is the result of being over funded.