Door to open for new Connecticut charter schools

Want to start a new state-funded school? The state of Connecticut is preparing to accept applications again for new charter schools and is giving preference to those that want to be dual language or service English language learners.

 Commissioner of Education Stefan Pryor told the state Board of Education on Wednesday that despite the state’s current budget crisis which caused his own department to cut back by more than $8 million, there are plans to increase charter schools.

 The state’s education reform bill increased the per pupil allocation from $10,500 to $11,500 which Pryor said will make the prospect of establishing more attractive.

A letter will be issued this week requesting interested parties submit letters of interest. Those letters will be due in early January. There then will be a formal request for proposal process.

There are 17 charter schools in the state including four in Bridgeport. Although charter schools have been around since 1997, only two have opened in the past six years.

Linda Lambeck