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1    AN ACT concerning education.
2    Be it enacted by the People of the State of Illinois,
3represented in the General Assembly:
4    Section 5. The School Code is amended by changing Sections
527A-4 and 27A-5 and by adding Sections 27A-10.5 and 27A-10.10
6as follows:
7    (105 ILCS 5/27A-4)
8    Sec. 27A-4. General Provisions.
9    (a) The General Assembly does not intend to alter or amend
10the provisions of any court-ordered desegregation plan in
11effect for any school district. A charter school shall be
12subject to all federal and State laws and constitutional
13provisions prohibiting discrimination on the basis of
14disability, race, creed, color, gender, national origin,
15religion, ancestry, marital status, or need for special
16education services.
17    (b) The total number of charter schools operating under
18this Article at any one time shall not exceed 120. Not more
19than 70 charter schools shall operate at any one time in any
20city having a population exceeding 500,000, with at least 5
21charter schools devoted exclusively to students from
22low-performing or overcrowded schools operating at any one time
23in that city; and not more than 45 charter schools shall



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1operate at any one time in the remainder of the State, with not
2more than one charter school that has been initiated by a board
3of education, or by an intergovernmental agreement between or
4among boards of education, operating at any one time in the
5school district where the charter school is located. In
6addition to these charter schools, up to but no more than 5
7charter schools devoted exclusively to re-enrolled high school
8dropouts and/or students 16 or 15 years old at risk of dropping
9out may operate at any one time in any city having a population
10exceeding 500,000. Notwithstanding any provision to the
11contrary in subsection (b) of Section 27A-5 of this Code, each
12such dropout charter may operate up to 15 campuses within the
13city. Any of these dropout charters may have a maximum of 1,875
14enrollment seats, any one of the campuses of the dropout
15charter may have a maximum of 165 enrollment seats, and each
16campus of the dropout charter must be operated, through a
17contract or payroll, by the same legal entity as that for which
18the charter is approved and certified.
19    For purposes of implementing this Section, the State Board
20shall assign a number to each charter submission it receives
21under Section 27A-6 for its review and certification, based on
22the chronological order in which the submission is received by
23it. The State Board shall promptly notify local school boards
24when the maximum numbers of certified charter schools
25authorized to operate have been reached.
26    (c) No charter shall be granted under this Article that



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1would convert any existing private, parochial, or non-public
2school to a charter school.
3    (d) Enrollment in a charter school shall be open to any
4pupil who resides within the geographic boundaries of the area
5served by the local school board, provided that the board of
6education in a city having a population exceeding 500,000 may
7designate attendance boundaries for no more than one-third of
8the charter schools permitted in the city if the board of
9education determines that attendance boundaries are needed to
10relieve overcrowding or to better serve low-income and at-risk
11students. Students residing within an attendance boundary may
12be given priority for enrollment, but must not be required to
13attend the charter school.
14    (e) Nothing in this Article shall prevent 2 or more local
15school boards from jointly issuing a charter to a single shared
16charter school, provided that all of the provisions of this
17Article are met as to those local school boards.
18    (f) No local school board shall require any employee of the
19school district to be employed in a charter school.
20    (g) No local school board shall require any pupil residing
21within the geographic boundary of its district to enroll in a
22charter school.
23    (h) If there are more eligible applicants for enrollment in
24a charter school than there are spaces available, successful
25applicants shall be selected by lottery. However, priority
26shall be given to siblings of pupils enrolled in the charter



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1school and to pupils who were enrolled in the charter school
2the previous school year, unless expelled for cause, and
3priority may be given to pupils residing within the charter
4school's attendance boundary, if a boundary has been designated
5by the board of education in a city having a population
6exceeding 500,000.
7    Beginning with student enrollment for the 2015-2016 school
8year, any lottery required under this subsection (h) must be
9administered and videotaped by the charter school. The
10authorizer or its designee must be allowed to be present or
11view the lottery in real time. The charter school must maintain
12a videotaped record of the lottery, including a time/date
13stamp. The charter school shall transmit copies of the
14videotape and all records relating to the lottery to the
15authorizer on or before September 1 of each year.
16    Subject to the requirements for priority applicant groups
17set forth in paragraph (1) of this subsection (h), any lottery
18required under this subsection (h) must be administered in a
19way that provides each student an equal chance at admission. If
20an authorizer makes a determination that a charter school's
21lottery is in violation of this subsection (h), it may
22administer the lottery directly. After a lottery, each student
23randomly selected for admission to the charter school must be
24notified. Charter schools may not create an admissions process
25subsequent to a lottery that may operate as a barrier to
26registration or enrollment.



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1    Charter schools may undertake additional intake
2activities, including without limitation student essays,
3school-parent compacts, or open houses, but in no event may a
4charter school require participation in these activities as a
5condition of enrollment. A charter school must submit an
6updated waitlist to the authorizer on a quarterly basis. A
7waitlist must be submitted to the authorizer at the same time
8as quarterly financial statements, if quarterly financial
9statements are required by the authorizer.
10    Dual enrollment at both a charter school and a public
11school or non-public school shall not be allowed. A pupil who
12is suspended or expelled from a charter school shall be deemed
13to be suspended or expelled from the public schools of the
14school district in which the pupil resides. Notwithstanding
15anything to the contrary in this subsection (h):
16        (1) any charter school with a mission exclusive to
17    educating high school dropouts may grant priority
18    admission to students who are high school dropouts and/or
19    students 16 or 15 years old at risk of dropping out and any
20    charter school with a mission exclusive to educating
21    students from low-performing or overcrowded schools may
22    restrict admission to students who are from low-performing
23    or overcrowded schools; "priority admission" for charter
24    schools exclusively devoted to re-enrolled dropouts or
25    students at risk of dropping out means a minimum of 90% of
26    students enrolled shall be high school dropouts; and



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1        (2) any charter school located in a school district
2    that contains all or part of a federal military base may
3    set aside up to 33% of its current charter enrollment to
4    students with parents assigned to the federal military
5    base, with the remaining 67% subject to the general
6    enrollment and lottery requirements of subsection (d) of
7    this Section and this subsection (h); if a student with a
8    parent assigned to the federal military base withdraws from
9    the charter school during the course of a school year for
10    reasons other than grade promotion, those students with
11    parents assigned to the federal military base shall have
12    preference in filling the vacancy.
13    (i) (Blank).
14    (j) Notwithstanding any other provision of law to the
15contrary, a school district in a city having a population
16exceeding 500,000 shall not have a duty to collectively bargain
17with an exclusive representative of its employees over
18decisions to grant or deny a charter school proposal under
19Section 27A-8 of this Code, decisions to renew or revoke a
20charter under Section 27A-9 of this Code, and the impact of
21these decisions, provided that nothing in this Section shall
22have the effect of negating, abrogating, replacing, reducing,
23diminishing, or limiting in any way employee rights,
24guarantees, or privileges granted in Sections 2, 3, 7, 8, 10,
2514, and 15 of the Illinois Educational Labor Relations Act.
26    (k) In this Section:



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1    "Low-performing school" means a public school in a school
2district organized under Article 34 of this Code that enrolls
3students in any of grades kindergarten through 8 and that is
4ranked within the lowest 10% of schools in that district in
5terms of the percentage of students meeting or exceeding
6standards on the Illinois Standards Achievement Test.
7    "Overcrowded school" means a public school in a school
8district organized under Article 34 of this Code that (i)
9enrolls students in any of grades kindergarten through 8, (ii)
10has a percentage of low-income students of 70% or more, as
11identified in the most recently available School Report Card
12published by the State Board of Education, and (iii) is
13determined by the Chicago Board of Education to be in the most
14severely overcrowded 5% of schools in the district. On or
15before November 1 of each year, the Chicago Board of Education
16shall file a report with the State Board of Education on which
17schools in the district meet the definition of "overcrowded
18school". "Students at risk of dropping out" means students 16
19or 15 years old in a public school in a district organized
20under Article 34 of this Code that enrolls students in any
21grades 9-12 who have been absent at least 90 school attendance
22days of the previous 180 school attendance days.
23    (l) For advertisements created after the effective date of
24this amendatory Act of the 98th General Assembly, any
25advertisement, including a radio, television, print, Internet,
26social media, or billboard advertisement, purchased by a school



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1district or public school, including a charter school, with
2public funds must include a disclaimer stating that the
3advertisement was paid for using public funds.
4    This disclaimer requirement does not extend to materials
5created by the charter school, including, but not limited to, a
6school website, informational pamphlets or leaflets, or
7clothing with affixed school logos.
8(Source: P.A. 97-151, eff. 1-1-12; 97-624, eff. 11-28-11;
997-813, eff. 7-13-12; 98-474, eff. 8-16-13.)
10    (105 ILCS 5/27A-5)
11    Sec. 27A-5. Charter school; legal entity; requirements.
12    (a) A charter school shall be a public, nonsectarian,
13nonreligious, non-home based, and non-profit school. A charter
14school shall be organized and operated as a nonprofit
15corporation or other discrete, legal, nonprofit entity
16authorized under the laws of the State of Illinois.
17    (b) A charter school may be established under this Article
18by creating a new school or by converting an existing public
19school or attendance center to charter school status. Beginning
20on the effective date of this amendatory Act of the 93rd
21General Assembly, in all new applications submitted to the
22State Board or a local school board to establish a charter
23school in a city having a population exceeding 500,000,
24operation of the charter school shall be limited to one campus.
25The changes made to this Section by this amendatory Act of the



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193rd General Assembly do not apply to charter schools existing
2or approved on or before the effective date of this amendatory
4    (b-5) In this subsection (b-5), "virtual-schooling" means
5the teaching of courses through online methods with online
6instructors, rather than the instructor and student being at
7the same physical location. "Virtual-schooling" includes
8without limitation instruction provided by full-time, online
9virtual schools.
10    From April 1, 2013 through April 1, 2014, there is a
11moratorium on the establishment of charter schools with
12virtual-schooling components in school districts other than a
13school district organized under Article 34 of this Code. This
14moratorium does not apply to a charter school with
15virtual-schooling components existing or approved prior to
16April 1, 2013 or to the renewal of the charter of a charter
17school with virtual-schooling components already approved
18prior to April 1, 2013.
19    On or before March 1, 2014, the Commission shall submit to
20the General Assembly a report on the effect of
21virtual-schooling, including without limitation the effect on
22student performance, the costs associated with
23virtual-schooling, and issues with oversight. The report shall
24include policy recommendations for virtual-schooling.
25    (c) A charter school shall be administered and governed by
26its board of directors or other governing body in the manner



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1provided in its charter. The governing body of a charter school
2shall be subject to the Freedom of Information Act and the Open
3Meetings Act.
4    (d) A charter school shall comply with all applicable
5health and safety requirements applicable to public schools
6under the laws of the State of Illinois.
7    (e) Except as otherwise provided in the School Code, a
8charter school shall not charge tuition; provided that a
9charter school may charge reasonable fees for textbooks,
10instructional materials, and student activities.
11    (f) A charter school shall be responsible for the
12management and operation of its fiscal affairs including, but
13not limited to, the preparation of its budget. An audit of each
14charter school's finances shall be conducted annually by an
15outside, independent contractor retained by the charter
16school. To ensure financial accountability for the use of
17public funds, on or before December 1 of every year of
18operation, each charter school shall submit to its authorizer
19and Annually, by December 1, every charter school must submit
20to the State Board a copy of its audit and a copy of the Form
21990 the charter school filed that year with the federal
22Internal Revenue Service. In addition, if deemed necessary for
23proper financial oversight of the charter school, an authorizer
24may require quarterly financial statements from each charter
26    (g) A charter school shall comply with all provisions of



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1this Article, the Illinois Educational Labor Relations Act, and
2its charter. A charter school is exempt from all other State
3laws and regulations in the School Code governing public
4schools and local school board policies, except the following:
5        (1) Sections 10-21.9 and 34-18.5 of the School Code
6    regarding criminal history records checks and checks of the
7    Statewide Sex Offender Database and Statewide Murderer and
8    Violent Offender Against Youth Database of applicants for
9    employment;
10        (2) Sections 24-24 and 34-84A of the School Code
11    regarding discipline of students;
12        (3) The Local Governmental and Governmental Employees
13    Tort Immunity Act;
14        (4) Section 108.75 of the General Not For Profit
15    Corporation Act of 1986 regarding indemnification of
16    officers, directors, employees, and agents;
17        (5) The Abused and Neglected Child Reporting Act;
18        (6) The Illinois School Student Records Act;
19        (7) Section 10-17a of the School Code regarding school
20    report cards; and
21        (8) The P-20 Longitudinal Education Data System Act.
22    The change made by Public Act 96-104 to this subsection (g)
23is declaratory of existing law.
24    (h) A charter school may negotiate and contract with a
25school district, the governing body of a State college or
26university or public community college, or any other public or



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1for-profit or nonprofit private entity for: (i) the use of a
2school building and grounds or any other real property or
3facilities that the charter school desires to use or convert
4for use as a charter school site, (ii) the operation and
5maintenance thereof, and (iii) the provision of any service,
6activity, or undertaking that the charter school is required to
7perform in order to carry out the terms of its charter.
8However, a charter school that is established on or after the
9effective date of this amendatory Act of the 93rd General
10Assembly and that operates in a city having a population
11exceeding 500,000 may not contract with a for-profit entity to
12manage or operate the school during the period that commences
13on the effective date of this amendatory Act of the 93rd
14General Assembly and concludes at the end of the 2004-2005
15school year. Except as provided in subsection (i) of this
16Section, a school district may charge a charter school
17reasonable rent for the use of the district's buildings,
18grounds, and facilities. Any services for which a charter
19school contracts with a school district shall be provided by
20the district at cost. Any services for which a charter school
21contracts with a local school board or with the governing body
22of a State college or university or public community college
23shall be provided by the public entity at cost.
24    (i) In no event shall a charter school that is established
25by converting an existing school or attendance center to
26charter school status be required to pay rent for space that is



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1deemed available, as negotiated and provided in the charter
2agreement, in school district facilities. However, all other
3costs for the operation and maintenance of school district
4facilities that are used by the charter school shall be subject
5to negotiation between the charter school and the local school
6board and shall be set forth in the charter.
7    (j) A charter school may limit student enrollment by age or
8grade level.
9    (k) If the charter school is approved by the Commission,
10then the Commission charter school is its own local education
12(Source: P.A. 97-152, eff. 7-20-11; 97-154, eff. 1-1-12;
1397-813, eff. 7-13-12; 98-16, eff. 5-24-13.)
14    (105 ILCS 5/27A-10.5 new)
15    Sec. 27A-10.5. Educational or charter management
17    (a) In this Section:
18    "CMO" means a charter management organization.
19    "EMO" means an educational management organization.
20    (b) All authorizers shall ensure that any charter school
21established on or after the effective date of this amendatory
22Act of the 98th General Assembly has a governing body that is
23separate and distinct from the governing body of any CMO or
24EMO. In reviewing charter applications and charter renewal
25applications, authorizers shall review the governance model



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1proposed by the applicant to ensure that there are no conflicts
2of interest.
3    (c) No charter school may employ a staff person who is
4simultaneously employed by an EMO or CMO.
5    (105 ILCS 5/27A-10.10 new)
6    Sec. 27A-10.10. Closure of charter school; unspent public
7funds; procedures for the disposition of property and assets.
8    (a) Upon the closing of a charter school authorized by one
9or more local school boards, the governing body of the charter
10school or its designee shall refund to the chartering entity or
11entities all unspent public funds. The charter school's other
12property and assets shall be disposed of under the provisions
13of the charter application and contract. If the application and
14contract are silent or ambiguous as to the disposition of any
15of the school's property or assets, any property or assets of
16the charter school purchased with public funds shall be
17returned to the school district or districts from which the
18charter school draws enrollment, at no cost to the receiving
19district or districts, subject to each district's acceptance of
20the property or asset. Any unspent public funds or other
21property or assets received by the charter school directly from
22any State or federal agency shall be refunded to or revert back
23to that State or federal agency, respectively.
24    (b) Upon the closing of a charter school authorized by the
25Commission, the governing body of the charter school or its



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1designee shall refund all unspent public funds to the State
2Board of Education. The charter school's other property and
3assets shall be disposed of under the provisions of the charter
4application and contract. If the application and contract are
5silent or ambiguous as to the disposition of any of the
6school's property or assets, any property or assets of the
7charter school purchased with public funds shall be returned to
8the school district or districts from which the charter school
9draws its enrollment, at no cost to the receiving district or
10districts, subject to each district's acceptance of the
11property or asset. Any unspent public funds or other property
12or assets provided by a State agency other than the State Board
13of Education or by a federal agency shall be refunded to or
14revert back to that State or federal agency, respectively.