NMCCS is monitoring SB141 and SB165 very closely. We have been up in Santa Fe and working with legislators and the lobbyists daily to ensure that charter schools are treated fairly and that schools/students don’t receive negative funding impact. Please pass this information to any of your stakeholders.
· SB141 and SB165 have both passed through the Senate and are moving to the House.
o IMPORTANT NOTE: SB141 data used numbers to calculate the impact on districts/charter schools that came from the LFC/LESC. These numbers differ significantly from the numbers generated by PED. The point is that the Legislature is making decisions about this bill using conflicting and possibly inaccurate data. There hasn’t been any slow-down to get verification/validation of the numbers. This is a SERIOUS concern.
· NMCCS has been able to get both bills heard by three House committees (Rules, Education and Appropriation)—the bills were on a “fast-track” to get to the House floor. What this means is that the bills are slowed down to be heard by each committee. With only a little over a week left in the Session we hope this will kill the bills.
· We are working with legislators to draft some amendments to bring to House Education if SB141 and SB165 make it to that committee.
· NMCCS and our lobbyists will be monitoring the bills daily. If it becomes necessary, we may send a “Call to Action” alert notice if we need you and your community to contact committees/legislators. Please be prepared to mobilize your school community quickly to get messages to the legislators.
SB 141 is a bill that adjusts Small School Size, At Risk Factor and Teacher Cost Index (formerly T & E) to the State Funding Formula. These adjustments result in almost 50% of charter schools losing funding as high as 22% of their budgets. In addition, 24 school districts will lose funding according to the PED calculations.
If the bill doesn’t pass, there will not be any change to the current funding formula in the three categories listed above.
SB 165 changes the definition of “Current Year MEM.” This means that schools that are implementing “formula-based” programs (such as adding a grade level) will have growth units calculated using current membership minus members for new formula-based programs. This will hurt charter schools that need additional funding for adding new programs.
Thank you to the schools who have already been to the Capitol and have contacted their legislators. We appreciate the support, and will continue to keep you apprised of all legislative action regarding SB141 and SB165.
Please be ready if we put out a call to action.