2015 Arkansas Code
Title 6 - Education
Subtitle 2 - Elementary And Secondary Education Generally
Chapter 23 - Arkansas Quality Charter Schools Act of 2013
Subchapter 3 - Open-Enrollment Public Charter Schools
§ 6-23-304 - Requirements -- Preference for certain districts.
(a) The authorizer may approve or deny an application based on:
(1) Criteria provided by law or by rule adopted by the State Board of Education;
(2) Findings of the authorizer relating to improving student performance and encouraging innovative programs; and
(3) Written findings or statements received by the authorizer from any public school district likely to be affected by the open-enrollment public charter school.
(b) The authorizer shall give preference in approving an application for an open-enrollment public charter school to be located in any public school district:
(1) When the percentage of students who qualify for free or reduced-price lunches is above the average for the state;
(2) When the district has been classified by the state board as in academic distress under § 6-15-428; or
(3) When the district has been classified by the Department of Education as in some phase of school improvement status under § 6-15-426 or some phase of fiscal distress under the Arkansas Fiscal Assessment and Accountability Program, § 6-20-1901 et seq., if the fiscal distress status is a result of administrative fiscal mismanagement, as determined by the state board.
(c) (1) (A) The department, the State Board of Education, or a combination of the department and state board may grant no more than a total of twenty-four (24) charters for open-enrollment public charter schools except as provided under subdivision (c)(1)(B) of this section.
(B) If the cap on the number of charters available for an open-enrollment public charter school is within two (2) charters of meeting any existing limitation or cap on available open-enrollment charters, the number of available charters shall automatically increase by five (5) slots more than the most recent existing limitation or cap on open-enrollment charters.
(C) By March 1 each year, the department shall issue a commissioner's memo stating the existing limitation on the number of charters available for open-enrollment public charter schools and the number of charters available for open-enrollment public charter schools during the next application cycle.
(2) An open-enrollment public charter applicant's school campus shall be limited to a single open-enrollment public charter school per charter except as allowed in subdivision (d) of this section.
(3) An open-enrollment public charter school shall not open in the service area of a public school district administratively reorganized under § 6-13-1601 et seq. until after the third year of the administrative reorganization.
(4) A private or parochial elementary or secondary school shall not be eligible for open-enrollment public charter school status.
(d) A charter applicant that receives an approved open-enrollment public charter may petition the authorizer for additional licenses to establish an open-enrollment public charter school in any of the various congressional districts in Arkansas if the applicant meets the following conditions:
(1) The approved open-enrollment public charter applicant has demonstrated academic success as defined by the state board for all public schools;
(2) The approved open-enrollment public charter applicant has not:
(A) Been subject to any disciplinary action by the authorizer;
(B) Been classified as in academic or fiscal distress; and
(C) Had its open-enrollment public charter placed on charter school probation or suspended or revoked under § 6-23-105; and
(3) The authorizer determines in writing by majority of a quorum present that the open-enrollment public charter applicant has generally established the educational program results and criteria set forth in this subsection.
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