Over the objections of charter school parents, the three-member board that runs the troubled Chester Upland School District voted last night to cap charter school enrollment at about its current level.
A resolution that limits overall charter enrollment to 2,573 students was passed 2-0 by the board, appointed in March by the Rendell administration to replace a Republican-dominated board that had favored charter expansion. Board member Katherine Schultz was absent.
Right now, 2,566 children, or 38 percent of the students in the district, are enrolled in three charter schools, with almost half of the students in grades kindergarten to eight in charters. There are no charter high schools. The regular public schools have an enrollment of 4,250.
Board President C. Marc Woolley has maintained that the cap is necessary to ensure the financial viability of the district.
Charter school supporters say that the board is taking away parents' choice and deny that the charters are responsible for the district's financial woes. The Chester Community Charter School will be taking the matter to court, said spokesman A. Bruce Crawley. - Dan Hardy