The ICSB staff will provide a written recommendation to nonrenew the charter agreement to the ICSB. The Organizer and the Principal of the School will also receive the written recommendation via email at least five days prior to the ICSB meeting. At the ICSB meeting, the ICSB will be presented with the staff’s recommendation, and the Organizer will have a period of time to respond to the recommendation to nonrenew (30 minutes). The ICSB will also hear relevant public comment (30 minutes). Then, the ICSB will vote on whether to nonrenew the Charter. The ICSB’s decision to nonrenew is final. If the ICSB votes to nonrenew the Charter, the Organizer, via the Board Chairman, and Principal will be notified within 24 hours via phone or email with a certified letter to follow. Nonrenewal notification will include the projected last day of charter existence.
Closure at the End of the Charter Term
The Indiana Charter School Board (“ICSB”) developed a charter school protocol “to ensure timely notification to parents, orderly transition of students and student records to new schools, and proper disposition of school funds, property, and assets” (IC 20-24-9-4.5 (a)). Additionally, the ICSB must, if a charter school closes for any reason, “oversee and work with the closing charter school to ensure a smooth and orderly closure and transition for students and parents…” (IC 12-24-9-4.5(b)). The Closure Protocol document is designed to both fulfill these statutory obligations and to provide transparency and information to ICSB-authorized schools.
The closure process has three major components: (1) notice; (2) presenting contrary evidence to closure; and (3) winding down of operations. These components are similar for both revocation and nonrenewal, though some components differ slightly. The legal difference between revocation and nonrenewal is a distinction in time. Revocation happens when an authorizer cancels the Charter for cause during the charter term (e.g., in year two). Nonrenewal takes place at the end of the charter term if an authorizer determines that another charter should not be issued.
Since nonrenewal is simply a decision to not renew a contract, there is no contractual, or property, interest at stake. Therefore, legally, due process is not required for instances of nonrenewal. However, the ICSB, in the interest of fairness and transparency, provides an opportunity for a representative of the Organizer to present evidence contrary to staff’s recommendation for nonrenewal before the ICSB votes on the subject.