Local boards win appeal on charter schools

Bob Egelko:

A state appeals court strengthened the authority of local school boards over charter schools Monday by making it harder for California education officials to approve statewide charters with campuses in multiple counties.
Charter schools are publicly funded and tuition-free but operate independently of local school districts and their union contracts, though districts are supposed to monitor their performance. They have been proliferating both in California and nationwide.
State law allows the state Board of Education, appointed by the governor, to let a company establish charter schools in far-flung counties without local approval or monitoring. Groups of school boards, administrators and teachers claimed the board was overstepping its authority, and on Monday, the First District Court of Appeal in San Francisco agreed.