Charter School Updates

The Souderton Charter School Collaborative (SCSC) located on Broad Street in Souderton is the only “bricks and mortar” charter school in Montgomery County. Approximately 185 students who reside in the Souderton Area attend SCSC instead of Souderton Area School District schools.

Charter schools are funded by school districts (not by the state) and our school district will provide SCSC with $2.5 million in funding this year. This method of funding charter schools, created by the Pennsylvania legislature, has established a competitive atmosphere between charter schools and public school districts as each seeks to maximize the educational impact of every dollar of funding. Over the past two years, a number of events have emphasized this atmosphere locally. A timeline and accompanying documentation below summarizes those events between January 2015 and today.

TIMELINE OF EVENTS, JANUARY 2015 - PRESENT

Date

Event

Notes

January 22, 2015

SASD Board passes resolution regarding Charter School Reform

A copy of the resolution can be found here.

February 16, 2016

SCSC requested to amend its charter and expand at a new location

A copy of the SCSC resolution can be found here.

March 29, 2016

SCSC withdrew its amendment request

A copy of the Superintendent’s message to staff regarding this action can be found here.

July 28, 2016

Meeting between SASD and SCSC officials

The parties met to review the recent charter amendment issue and establish new lines of communication. Click here for a summary of the meeting.

September 19, 2016

Follow up Meeting with Charter School Administrators

SASD Administrators met with SCSC Administrators to discuss ongoing issues and communication. Click here for a summary of the meeting.

October 12, 2016

SASD Administrators proposed Annual Charter School Review Process to SASD Board

The SASD administration developed and proposed the review process to the SASD Board at an Education/Personnel Committee Meeting. A copy of the proposed process can be found here.

October 2016

PA House Bill 530 was considered by the legislature

Bill authorizing changes to charter school law was considered and ultimately tabled by PA Legislature. Information about the bill that was proposed can be found here. A copy of the SASD Board President’s letter regarding the legislation can be found here.

December 8, 2016

SCSC sought to lease additional space in building adjacent to current facility

Prospective owner of property adjacent to SCSC filed for Conditional Use Hearing by Souderton Borough Council. A copy of the Borough Council’s advertisement of the hearing can be found in here.

January 5, 2017

Souderton Borough Council held the Conditional Use Hearing

SASD Administrators and Board members attended the hearing. Superintendent Gallagher questioned witnesses and made a closing statement regarding the impact of any potential enrollment increases at SCSC.

February 6, 2017

Souderton Borough Council voted on Conditional Use Application

The Council approved the Conditional Use Application, subject to a number of conditions. A copy of the Council’s resolution can be found here.

April 24, 2017 SASD Administrators conducted an on-site visit at SCSC Members of the SCSC Board, Administration, and teaching staff conducted a tour of their facility for SASD Administrators. The SCSC representatives shared details regarding the schools' instructional programs and demographics, and provided supporting documentation to the District.
June 13, 2017 Exploration of joint health insurance was conducted SASD and SCSC Administrators investigated the plausibility of incorporating SCSC employees into the District's health insurance plans. The proposition was rejected due to financial and legal constraints.