Governor Rick Snyder has signed a bill into law that gets rid of the cap on the number of university-sponsored charter schools in the state.
Snyder said he hopes allowing more charter schools to open their doors in Michigan will encourage all schools to improve their performance.
“One of the nice parts about charters is it really emphasizes innovation and entrepreneurial ideas about how to really advance education,” said Snyder. “It’s the system of school concept that you’re going to see more and more across all education – that it’s not just about a district, it’s about schools being successful.”
Critics of the measure say the law does not include enough assurances that charter schools meet high standards. And they say charter schools leave out special-needs students through selective enrollment and interviewing.
Governor Snyder said treatment of students with special needs is a concern.
“I would like to say that there’s a better job in general that we can do with special-needs kids, and that’s something that a more comprehensive review would be appropriate – including the intermediate school districts, the whole process of how we do it today, and how we can work better together. Because it’s important, again, to have all our kids be as successful as possible,” Snyder said.
The law will allow an unlimited number of university-sponsored charter schools to operate in Michigan by 2015.