The Board of Public Education held their meeting on November 30. At that session, each charter application was allowed to present their information and then answer questions from the board members. On January 18 and 19 the Board of Public Education will meet again to approve or deny the charter applications.
One of the questions that is being asked is why are we supporting a for profit organization for a charter school. The school itself must operate as any public school in Montana, with exceptions on class size and a few other similar items. Park City Schools is partnering with Pearson much like we do with other vendors (vendors that are for profit) to provide the curriculum, on line materials, and other aspects of the school. We know this is an innovative type of school within the current charter laws that is needed in the state. Our goal would be to attract home school students, students that are struggling in regular brick and mortar schools, students that miss long periods of schooling for athletic training and other events, as well as those who want to try something different. The administrative team of Park City Schools will oversee the Charter and will receive regular reports from the Charter regarding student learning rates and finance. The Park City School Board will review the Charter at least annually through a thorough report from the Charter.
Per HB 549, the Board of Public Education is required to hold an interview and allow public comment on all public charter school applications. The Board will hold a special virtual meeting on November 30, beginning at 8AM, to meet these requirements. Each applicant will have a total of 20 minutes (5 minutes of introductions and explanation of the executive summary, 10 minutes of Board questions, 5 minutes of public comment). For those wishing to give virtual public comment, please contact bpe.mt.gov to request the zoom link for the meeting. For those wishing to share written public comment, please submit comments to email@example.com.