2018 Oklahoma Statutes
Title 70. Schools
§70-3-134. Applications – Presubmission training – Contents - Procedures.

Universal Citation: 70 OK Stat § 70-3-134 (2018)

A. For written applications filed after January 1, 2008, prior to submission of the application to a proposed sponsor seeking to establish a charter school, the applicant shall be required to complete training which shall not exceed ten (10) hours provided by the State Department of Education on the process and requirements for establishing a charter school. The Department shall develop and implement the training by January 1, 2008. The Department may provide the training in any format and manner that the Department determines to be efficient and effective including, but not limited to, web-based training.

B. Except as otherwise provided for in Section 3-137 of this title, an applicant seeking to establish a charter school shall submit a written application to the proposed sponsor as prescribed in subsection E of this section. The application shall include:

1. A mission statement for the charter school;

2. A description including, but not limited to, background information of the organizational structure and the governing body of the charter school;

3. A financial plan for the first five (5) years of operation of the charter school and a description of the treasurer or other officers or persons who shall have primary responsibility for the finances of the charter school. Such person shall have demonstrated experience in school finance or the equivalent thereof;

4. A description of the hiring policy of the charter school;

5. The name of the applicant or applicants and requested sponsor;

6. A description of the facility and location of the charter school;

7. A description of the grades being served;

8. An outline of criteria designed to measure the effectiveness of the charter school;

9. A demonstration of support for the charter school from residents of the school district which may include but is not limited to a survey of the school district residents or a petition signed by residents of the school district;

10. Documentation that the applicants completed charter school training as set forth in subsection A of this section;

11. A description of the minimum and maximum enrollment planned per year for each term of the charter contract;

12. The proposed calendar for the charter school and sample daily schedule;

13. Unless otherwise authorized by law or regulation, a description of the academic program aligned with state standards;

14. A description of the instructional design of the charter school, including the type of learning environment, class size and structure, curriculum overview and teaching methods;

15. The plan for using internal and external assessments to measure and report student progress on the performance framework developed by the applicant in accordance with subsection C of Section 3-135 of this title;

16. The plans for identifying and successfully serving students with disabilities, students who are English language learners and students who are academically behind;

17. A description of cocurricular or extracurricular programs and how they will be funded and delivered;

18. Plans and time lines for student recruitment and enrollment, including lottery procedures;

19. The student discipline policies for the charter school, including those for special education students;

20. An organizational chart that clearly presents the organizational structure of the charter school, including lines of authority and reporting between the governing board, staff, any related bodies such as advisory bodies or parent and teacher councils and any external organizations that will play a role in managing the school;

21. A clear description of the roles and responsibilities for the governing board, the leadership and management team for the charter school and any other entities shown in the organizational chart;

22. The leadership and teacher employment policies for the charter school;

23. Proposed governing bylaws;

24. Explanations of any partnerships or contractual partnerships central to the operations or mission of the charter school;

25. The plans for providing transportation, food service and all other significant operational or ancillary services;

26. Opportunities and expectations for parental involvement;

27. A detailed school start-up plan that identifies tasks, time lines and responsible individuals;

28. A description of the financial plan and policies for the charter school, including financial controls and audit requirements;

29. A description of the insurance coverage the charter school will obtain;

30. Start-up and five-year budgets with clearly stated assumptions;

31. Start-up and first-year cash-flow projections with clearly stated assumptions;

32. Evidence of anticipated fundraising contributions, if claimed in the application;

33. A sound facilities plan, including backup or contingency plans if appropriate;

34. A requirement that the charter school governing board meet at a minimum quarterly in the state and that for those charter schools outside of counties with a population of five hundred thousand (500,000) or more, that a majority of members are residents within the geographic boundary of the sponsoring entity; and

35. A requirement that the charter school follow the requirements of the Oklahoma Open Meeting Act and Oklahoma Open Records Act.

C. A board of education of a public school district, public body, public or private college or university, private person, or private organization may contract with a sponsor to establish a charter school. A private school shall not be eligible to contract for a charter school under the provisions of the Oklahoma Charter Schools Act.

D. The sponsor of a charter school is the board of education of a school district, the board of education of a technology center school district, a higher education institution, the State Board of Education, or a federally recognized Indian tribe which meets the criteria established in Section 3-132 of this title. Any board of education of a school district in the state may sponsor one or more charter schools. The physical location of a charter school sponsored by a board of education of a school district or a technology center school district shall be within the boundaries of the sponsoring school district. The physical location of a charter school sponsored by the State Board of Education when the applicant of the charter school is the Office of Juvenile Affairs shall be where an Office of Juvenile Affairs facility for youth is located. The physical location of a charter school otherwise sponsored by the State Board of Education pursuant to paragraph 8 of subsection A of Section 3-132 of this title shall be in the school district in which the application originated.

E. An applicant for a charter school may submit an application to a proposed sponsor which shall either accept or reject sponsorship of the charter school within ninety (90) days of receipt of the application. If the proposed sponsor rejects the application, it shall notify the applicant in writing of the reasons for the rejection. The applicant may submit a revised application for reconsideration to the proposed sponsor within thirty (30) days after receiving notification of the rejection. The proposed sponsor shall accept or reject the revised application within thirty (30) days of its receipt. Should the sponsor reject the application on reconsideration, the applicant may appeal the decision to the State Board of Education with the revised application for review pursuant to paragraph 8 of subsection A of Section 3-132 of this title. The State Board of Education shall hear the appeal no later than sixty (60) days from the date received by the Board.

F. A board of education of a school district, board of education of a technology center school district, higher education institution, or federally recognized Indian tribe sponsor of a charter school shall notify the State Board of Education when it accepts sponsorship of a charter school. The notification shall include a copy of the charter of the charter school.

G. Applicants for charter schools proposed to be sponsored by an entity other than a school district pursuant to paragraph 1 of subsection A of Section 3-132 of this title may, upon rejection of the revised application, proceed to binding arbitration under the commercial rules of the American Arbitration Association with costs of the arbitration to be borne by the proposed sponsor. Applicants for charter schools proposed to be sponsored by school districts pursuant to paragraph 1 of subsection A of Section 3-132 of this title may not proceed to binding arbitration but may be sponsored by the State Board of Education as provided in paragraph 8 of subsection A of Section 3-132 of this title.

H. If a board of education of a technology center school district, a higher education institution, the State Board of Education, or a federally recognized Indian tribe accepts sponsorship of a charter school, the administrative, fiscal and oversight responsibilities of the technology center school district, the higher education institution, or the federally recognized Indian tribe shall be listed in the contract. No responsibilities shall be delegated to a school district unless the local school district agrees to assume the responsibilities.

I. A sponsor of a public charter school shall have the following powers and duties:

1. Provide oversight of the operations of charter schools in the state through annual performance reviews of charter schools and reauthorization of charter schools for which it is a sponsor;

2. Solicit and evaluate charter applications;

3. Approve quality charter applications that meet identified educational needs and promote a diversity of educational choices;

4. Decline to approve weak or inadequate charter applications;

5. Negotiate and execute sound charter contracts with each approved public charter school;

6. Monitor, in accordance with charter contract terms, the performance and legal compliance of charter schools; and

7. Determine whether each charter contract merits renewal, nonrenewal or revocation.

J. Sponsors shall establish a procedure for accepting, approving and disapproving charter school applications in accordance with subsection E of this section.

K. Sponsors shall be required to develop and maintain chartering policies and practices consistent with recognized principles and standards for quality charter authorizing as established by the State Department of Education in all major areas of authorizing responsibility, including organizational capacity and infrastructure, soliciting and evaluating charter applications, performance contracting, ongoing charter school oversight and evaluation and charter renewal decision-making.

L. Sponsors acting in their official capacity shall be immune from civil and criminal liability with respect to all activities related to a charter school with which they contract.

Added by Laws 1999, c. 320, § 9, eff. July 1, 1999. Amended by Laws 2001, c. 33, § 69, eff. July 1, 2001; Laws 2007, c. 257, § 2; Laws 2010, c. 288, § 2, eff. Nov. 1, 2010; Laws 2011, c. 1, § 36, emerg. eff. March 18, 2011; Laws 2011, c. 367, § 2; Laws 2015, c. 170, § 2.

NOTE: Laws 2010, c. 290, § 2 repealed by Laws 2011, c. 1, § 37, emerg. eff. March 18, 2011.

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