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Charter School Cash Cow in Albany

Here’s some interesting food for thought courtesy of the NY Daily News, describing how, thanks to a little known tax break, big banks can nearly double their investment in charter schools in as little as seven years.

Meanwhile, the powerful charter school lobby “has so far successfully battled to prevent independent government audits of how its schools spend their state aid.” One charter in Albany—which has the highest percentage of charter enrollments statewide—has seen its rents rise from $170,000 in 2008 to $560,000 in 2009.

  • Cliche

    It’s insane that there are not independent audits of how charters spend government aid. For real.

    Of course, to have auditors audit the schools those auditors would have to be paid. And most accountants earn more than $50k a year so Buck – what are we going to do? Stuck between a rock and a hard place here.

  • Rod McCallum

    This audit assertion is absolutely false. It is one of the many misconceptions fed to the public by opponents of charter schools. Charters schools are required by law to have an independent audit on an annual basis. These audits must be submitted to the State Education Department and the charter school authorizer (SUNY, State Ed, NYC Schools, Buffalo Board of Ed, etc.). The oversight is double for schools that must be accountable to a charter authorizer and the State Education Department. Further, by law, these audits are public record and available to anyone who requests them. What is not allowed is for the state comptroller to use audits as a political weapon tying up the very limited resources of charter schools that have 1/3 of their funding skimmed off by the district.