Non-Renewal, Revocation, and Closure
If efforts to improve under a corrective action plan or other similar measures are unsuccessful, the authorizer may elect to close the school. Depending on available corrective measures and the severity of the problem, this may be accomplished through non-renewal (not renewing the charter during the normal renewal cycle), revocation (authorizer proactively removes or terminates the charter outside of the normal renewal cycle), or relinquishment (school voluntarily releases or surrenders its charter).
If a charter school ceases to exist, there are several considerations relative to students with disabilities that you as authorizer should consider:
- Closing procedures, including specific responsibilities for student records and the allocation of other school property should be addressed in the school’s charter;
- How the school will ensure that records of students with disabilities are appropriately transferred. All students’ educational records are protected by the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) (20 U.S.C. § 1232g; 34 CFR Part 99) that stipulates how the records are to be handled appropriately. Charter school personnel are responsible for closing and preparing files for transfer to either the next school or the LEA or SEA special education office in accord with these regulations. Information about FERPA is available online at: www.ed.gov/policy/gen/guid/fpco/ferpa/index.html;
- Specific accounting for special education funds, including how dollars were spent and the disposition of materials and equipment purchased with these dollars;
- How any special equipment purchased for students with disabilities will be distributed, especially any purchases made with federal dollars. Typically, this equipment should follow the child to his or her next public school placement. This is especially critical when federal funds were used;
- Any continuing legal obligations of the charter school to students with disabilities, such as participating in in IEP staffing meetings at schools in which the students enroll after leaving the closing school.