On Sept. 10, a group of Baltimore charter operators filed a lawsuit, alleging that the district gives charters less money than they are lawfully entitled, and has failed to live up to its contractual obligations around budget transparency. The plaintiffs are seeking a monetary judgment of at least $75,000. The lawsuit was not a direct response to the district's Sept. 8 proposal.
On Sept. 22, the district withdrew its funding proposal, and University of Baltimore President and former Mayor Kurt L. Schmoke agreed to help mediate between the charters and the district. Four days later, advocates organized a rally at Lake Montebello Park in support of charter schools. The lawsuit is still ongoing.
As I've been following the story, I've noticed some issues generally absent from, or misrepresented in, the public discussion. It's important to go beyond the talking points of whether one is "pro or anti-charter" or "cares about kids and opportunity." I'd venture that most would agree that Baltimore charters have offered something important and valuable to the local educational landscape, and now it's a matter of figuring out how to best support them in a way that doesn't hurt other students, as well as figuring out what kind of charter sector Baltimore envisions for its future.