The Mississippi Charter School Act: Will it Produce Effective and Equitable Charter Schools?

25 Pages Posted: 25 Aug 2018  

Robert A. Garda

Loyola University of New Orleans College of Law

Date Written: July 23, 2018

Abstract

The Mississippi Charter School Act (CSA) is under constitutional and political attack. On the first front, litigation is underway challenging the funding provisions of the CSA under the Mississippi Constitution. The second front is a broader political attack against charter schools generally, which questions their effectiveness, viability and impact on traditional public schools. These critical issues have diverted attention from a third, and equally important, consideration: whether the CSA is an effective charter enabling statute. This article addresses this overlooked issue and analyzes the CSA to determine if it constructs a landscape that ensures the creation, governance and oversight of effective and equitable charter schools.

The current constitutional and political attacks seek to prevent charter schools from existing at-all in Mississippi. But if charter schools are deemed constitutionally permissible (almost all similar attacks have failed) and if they continue to grow in Mississippi (as is occurring nationwide), the CSA and the policies of the Charter School Authorizer Board of Mississippi (CSAB) stand as the primary mechanisms ensuring charter schools are effective and provide equitable access. This article provides a critique of the CSA and CSAB’s policies and suggests changes to ensure that Mississippi provides equitable access to high performing charter schools.

Keywords: education law, Mississippi, school law

Suggested Citation

Garda, Robert A., The Mississippi Charter School Act: Will it Produce Effective and Equitable Charter Schools? (July 23, 2018). 36 Miss. C. L. Rev. 265 (2018); Loyola University New Orleans College of Law Research Paper No. 2018-10. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3237654

Robert A. Garda (Contact Author)

Loyola University of New Orleans College of Law ( email )

7214 St. Charles Ave.
Campus Box 901
New Orleans, LA 70118
United States

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