Under the Dome

House votes to move control of charter schools

The House voted Monday to move control of the state charter school office to the State Board of Education, and to have the board appoint the office’s executive director.

The bill keeps the charter school office in Department of Public Instruction for administrative purposes, but says the office is “subject to the supervision, direction and control of the State Board of Education.”

The House approved the measure 85-19. If the Senate approves the bill, it will go to Gov. Pat McCrory for his signature.

The charter office director is currently a state Department of Public Instruction employee working for State Superintendent of Public Instruction June Atkinson, a Democrat. The office is running with an interim director.

Under the bill, Lt. Gov. Dan Forest, the Board Vice-Chairman A.L. Collins and another board member would be on the search committee for the next executive director. They would make a recommendation for appointment to the State Board, which has a Republican majority.

Rep. Paul Luebke, a Durham Democrat, objected to the change, saying it would shift authority away from DPI.