South Carolina Charter School Law Changes, May 2012

This is South Carolina's new charter school law, adopted in May 2012. Among other changes, the law allows single-sex charter schools and sponsorship of schools by institutions of higher learning. It also makes charter school students “eligible to compete for, and if selected, participate in any extracurricular activities not offered by the student's charter school which are offered at the resident public school he would otherwise attend.”

The law also creates a facilities loan program that is to be funded with state, federal, and privately donated funds to support construction, purchase, renovation, and maintenance of charter school facilities, with the State Treasurer setting procedures for applications and repayment.

Regarding allocation of federal funds associated with certain categories of students, the law states that the proportional share of the money must be distributed by sponsors to charter schools within 10 business days of receiving it. If that doesn’t happen, the state can fine the sponsor the equivalent of the amount withheld.