From the category of “Differences Between Public Schools and Charter Schools.”
This is from today’s Charlotte Observer article entitled “Want public emails from this NC charter school? Write a check for $7,500 up front.”
A Charlotte-area charter school has responded to a public records request by demanding an up-front payment of $7,500, saying that’s the estimated cost of paying a contractor to produce the emails and a lawyer to oversee the work.
The request comes from Charter School Ethics, which describes itself as a Texas-based charter school watchdog group that remains anonymous for the safety of its volunteers. The group, which communicates by email, filed a request for nine months of emails related to a consultant working with Thunderbird.
On the other side is Thunderbird Prep, a small, struggling charter school whose complex financial arrangements have led to scrutiny from state officials. It’s part of a rapidly growing segment of North Carolina’s public education scene, with the state spending $513 million on 167 schools in 2016-17.