Don’t be fooled by the language used in the Georgia Charter Amendment. The official ballot text reads as follows:
Shall the Constitution of Georgia be amended to allow state or local approval of public charter schools upon the request of local communities?
( ) YES
( ) NO
All persons desiring to vote in favor of ratifying the proposed amendment shall vote “Yes.”
All persons desiring to vote against ratifying the proposed amendment shall vote “No.”
If such amendment shall be ratified as provided in said Paragraph of the Constitution, it shall become a part of the Constitution of this state.
Why is this Amendment on the Ballot?
Two years ago the Supreme Court of Georgia’s decision Gwinnett County School District v. Cox found that the state constitution does not authorize any governmental entity to create or run schools that are not under the control of a local board of education. The court ordered that no other government entity can compete with or duplicate the efforts of local boards of education in establishing and maintaining general K-12 schools. And it further states that local boards of education have the exclusive authority to fulfill one of the primary obligations of the Georgia, namely “the provision of an adequate public education for all citizens” (Art. VIII, Sec. I, Par. I.).
This made a lot of politicians and charter school advocates and charter management groups very angry. So angry that they decided to use resources of ALEC and its political and corporate clout to change the Georgia constitution that would enable three politicians (the governor, lieutenant-governor, and speaker of the house) to set up an unelected state charter board that could supersede the authority of your local school system. Even with out local approval this state commission could approve charter schools throughout the state on “taxpayer backs.”
Don’t Let Them Pull One on US! Vote no on the Charter Amendment