Judge upholds Mississippi's charter school law - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

Judge upholds Mississippi's charter school law

Source: WLBT archives Source: WLBT archives

A judge is upholding Mississippi's charter school law, rejecting a constitutional challenge to the statute.

Hinds County Chancery Judge Dewayne Thomas ruled Tuesday that diversions of local property taxes to charter schools are acceptable, and that the schools do not need to be overseen by a local or state superintendent.

A group of plaintiffs, represented by the Southern Poverty Law Center, could appeal the decision. Lawyers on both sides have long said the case is bound for the Mississippi Supreme Court.

Thomas says the state constitution doesn't forbid local property taxes from following a student to a charter school, agreeing with the law's defenders that such transfers already happen in some cases. Thomas also rejects the argument that charter schools have to be overseen by a state or district superintendent.

This is a great day for children in Mississippi and a great day for charter schools," said Grant Callen with Empower Mississippi

Statement of Lt. Gov. Tate Reeves released a statement saying: 

I appreciate the Court for recognizing the Legislature’s responsibility to improve the education attainment level of all students. It’s time for the coalition of the status quo to stop fighting us in courts and join us in focusing on educating all Mississippi children.

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