Nationally Recognized School Funding Experts Pair with State Advocates to Advise Charter School Leaders

Afton Partners, a national organization specializing in school funding and education policy, has announced via social media a new partnership with the Tennessee State Collaborative for Reforming Education(SCORE) and  The Tennessee Charter School Center(TCSC). The stated purpose of the budding collaboration is to help Tennessee’s charter school leaders better understand the operational and financial implications of Tennessee Investment in Student Achievement(TISA) – the state’s new funding formula for public schools. 

TISA was passed by legislators during the last General Assembly and is slated to replace the current funding formula for the 2023-2024 school year. Touted as a formula that funds students over systems, the bill establishes a base funding rate of $6,860 per pupil, then distributes additional funding for students considered as being economically disadvantaged, having unique learning needs, or living in rural or impoverished communities. Tennessee charter schools are considered public schools and therefore receive funding through their charter authorizer at the same rate as traditional schools. 

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Senate Passes Bill to Standardize Open Enrollment Processes for Schools

Classroom full of kids, that are being read a book

The Tennessee Senate passed a bill to standardize open enrollment processes for schools. Present law allows local educational authorities (LEA) to develop their own policies for open enrollment periods. Through the bill, each LEA would be required to have the open enrollment period last at least 30 days, as well as identify schools with available space for enrollment based on grade, class, and program level at least two weeks before the open enrollment period begins. It wouldn’t allow students to enroll in counties outside of their own.

The bill passed 27 to 2, with 3 senators abstaining their vote. State Senators Heidi Campbell (D-Nashville) and Jeff Yarbro (D-Nashville) voted against the bill; Raumesh Akbari (D-Memphis), Brenda Gilmore (D-Nashville), and Sara Kyle (D-Memphis) abstained.

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