Charter Champions: 2010

U.S. Representative Jared Polis (D-CO-2nd)

Polis introduced the bipartisan All Students Achieving through Reform Act (All-STAR), H.R. 4330, to support the expansion and replication of high-quality public charter schools that close the achievement gap. It is a key proposal and recognized as the most important piece of federal charter school legislation proposed since the original Charter Schools Program in 1994. Throughout his public service, Rep. Polis, who founded and served as superintendent of charter schools serving at-risk students, has worked hard to ensure that public charter schools are treated fairly and have equal access to education dollars.

Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal (R)

Jindal advanced legislation to remove the state cap on charter school growth, improve charter school funding equity and strengthen charter school authorizing practices. Each of these elements supports a policy environment in which charter schools can thrive. Governor Jindal is also responsible for many of the groundbreaking education reform efforts in New Orleans – where charters serve a higher percentage of public school students than anywhere else in the nation with 57 percent of public school students in charter schools.

Michigan State Senator Wayne Kuipers (R-30th)

Kuipers led an effort to lift Michigan’s cap on charter schools and was instrumental in building bipartisan support of charter schools in December 2009. His support and leadership has led to countless new public education opportunities for children throughout the state.

St. Louis Mayor Francis G. Slay (D)

Slay is a vocal advocate for increasing the presence of high-quality public charter schools in St. Louis. His work to attract high-quality charter operators to St. Louis – and support them during the application development and approval process – is a national example of how mayors can work directly to improve their cities’ public education offerings.