Senate Bill 819 – call to action!

As you may have heard, SB 819 (senate bill) has been introduced in the Oregon Senate that would increase the public funding of Oregon (non-virtual) public charter schools to %95!  The Arco Iris Board wants to enlist your help in advocating for its swift passage by the Oregon Legislature.

Why Support SB 819?

In the 2012-2013 school year, Oregon public charter schools received 58% of the funding that district schools received. SB 819 would guarantee that non-virtual public charter schools in Oregon such as Arco Iris would receive 95% of the public funds (excluding special education and facilities funding) that district schools receive.

While other bills regarding charter school funding are also being considered, SB 819 provides the strongest support for charter schools and is well-positioned to move through the Legislature.

What can you do?

Contact your Oregon legislator. In particular your state senator and let them know you support SB 819 and they should as well.  Email them, call them, write them, meet with them, but use your voice!

We have provided talking points as well as an email template below:

  • In the 2012-2013 school year, Oregon charter schools received 58% of the funding of district schools.  This is unfair, placing an unreasonable burden on parents and school administrators to make the school budget balance.
  • Oregon charter schools serve vital needs in their school districts and deserve our support.  Funding equal to 95% of what district schools receive is not too much to ask.
  • That 95% does not include either special education or facilities funding – we are talking about basic school operations.
  • SB 819 does not raise taxes and only requires a shift of less than 1% of the state K-12 budget.
  • Only those schools that receive new or renewed school charters are eligible for increased  funding, so SB 819 ensures that the funding will only go to schools that can prove they are serving the needs of the community.

EMAIL/LETTER TEMPLATE HERE: Letter Template – Support SB 819

To find your legislators, click on the link and enter your address in the “Find My Legislators” search window at the bottom right-hand portion of the screen:  https://www.oregonlegislature.gov/.

Here is a link to the Oregon Legislature’s webpage regarding SB 819, including the text of the bill, the key sponsors (you can reach out to them, too!), the current status of the bill, and the schedule of events for the bill, such as public hearings: https://olis.leg.state.or.us/liz/2015R1/Measures/Overview/SB819.

We anticipate that a hearing will be scheduled in EARLY APRIL, so start getting the message out now!

We support SB 819, and we hope that you will, too.

Thank You,

The Arco Iris Board of Directors

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