Cyber charter schools may appeal to the State Charter School Appeal Board (CAB) from the written decision of the Department of Education denying a cyber charter application, revoking a charter or denying renewal of a charter. In addition, cyber charters may file a direct appeal if the Department fails to hold a public hearing or timely act on an application.
To file an appeal, the cyber charter school must send a letter or petition of appeal to CAB at the following address:
State Charter School Appeal Board
c/o Ernest N. Helling, Counsel
333 Market Street
Harrisburg, PA 17126-0333
The letter or petition should attach the Department’s decision and should briefly explain the reason why the cyber charter school disagrees with that decision. A copy of the appeal should also be sent to the Department.
After the appeal is received, Counsel for CAB will acknowledge receipt and request the Department to certify the record and to file an answer to the appeal. If necessary, Counsel or an assigned hearing officer will hold a prehearing conference. Counsel or the assigned hearing officer will determine whether a hearing is needed on evidentiary issues, will determine whether supplemental documents are to be offered for CAB’s consideration, will set a schedule for the filing of briefs and will set the date for presentation of the case to CAB.
The parties will be invited to appear before CAB to argue the appeal. Each side will have 15 minutes to present its case and CAB will ask questions. At this time CAB will also review the record.
At the next board meeting, CAB will discuss and vote on the appeal. Subsequent to the vote and consistent with the vote and discussion, a written decision will be prepared and issued to the parties.
Either party may appeal CAB’s decision to Commonwealth Court. If the Department appeals and seeks a stay, such must first be requested from CAB.
In reviewing an appeal, CAB shall apply the same standards as applied to the underlying decision of the Department.
The Secretary shall recuse himself and shall not participate in the appeal or decision in any way.