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Government & Politics

Akron Public Schools Prepare for Possible Influx of Charter School Students

photo desks and chairs
STATEHOUSE NEWS BUREAU
Charter schools may have trouble weathering the financial challenges the pandemic has imposed on schools.

The coronavirus pandemic has led to unprecedented economic concerns for state government. In early May, the governor ordered state departments to cut spending by $775 million through the end of June. Cuts to education funding could affect the state’s charter schools.

Under Gov. Mike DeWine’s guidance, state funding for charter schools was cut 1% through the end of June. Although this is only one third of the cuts imposed on public schools, Ohio Department of Education spokeswoman Mandy Minick expects more charter school cuts in the future.

“I think it’s fair to say that budget tightening is likely to be a trend in state government for some time to come just given the current circumstances,” Minick said.

Akron has 15 charter schools. Akron Public Schools’ chief financial officer Ryan Pendleton told the school board’s finance committee he’s keeping an eye on them. 

“There may be further closures of those charter and community schools, thus an influx of students to us," Pendleton said.

Pendleton says the district could accommodate those students, though no extra funding will come with them.