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SB 537: Charter school oversight report (2007)


SB 537 directs the California Research Bureau to conduct a study of oversight costs for charter schools.

For more information, you can read the SB 537 "Fact Sheet" prepared by a member of Senator Simitian's staff.

Final Status and Text

SB 537 is no longer active. Its final status was:
Signed into Law

You can read its final text on the Legislature's Bill Information site.

Background Information


The Charter Schools Act of 1992 authorized chartering agencies to charge between 1 and 3 percent of a charter school’s revenue for oversight costs.  Because the actual costs of oversight could not be known at the time, the oversight fee range established in statute was a best guess.  In the 15 years since the codification of the Charter Schools Act the question of oversight costs – i.e. what they are in actuality – and the question of key elements of oversight, have not been revisited. 

Further, in a series of hearings on charter schools that the Education Master Plan Committee held last year, the only issue on which all parties agreed was that oversight costs need to be re-examined.

SB 537 in Detail

  • Directs the California Research Bureau to prepare a report on the key elements and actual costs of charter school oversight. The report shall address all of the following:
    • The range of annual activities that entities providing supervisorial oversight of charter schools are expected to perform.
    • Staff time spent on reviewing charter petitions measured by the size of school districts and the number of charter petitions reviewed.
    • Staff time spent on oversight responsibilities measured by the size of school districts and the number of charter schools.
    • Best practices for charter school oversight measured by efficiency and effectiveness.
    • Comparison of school district costs and revenues attributable to charter school oversight.
    • Length of time required to review a single charter petition.
    • Policy recommendations for structuring charter school oversight and accountability in California.
  • In preparing its report, the California Research Bureau shall consult with an advisory panel to ensure technical accuracy.