STAND. COM. REP. NO. 173
RE: S.B. No. 937
Honorable Ronald D. Kouchi
President of the Senate
Thirtieth State Legislature
Regular Session of 2019
State of Hawaii
Your Committee on Education, to which was referred S.B. No. 937 entitled:
"A BILL FOR AN ACT RELATING TO CHARTER SCHOOLS,"
begs leave to report as follows:
The purpose and intent of this measure is to appropriate funds for the State Public Charter School Commission to allocate to charter schools for meal service costs.
Your Committee received testimony in support of this measure from the Department of Education, State Public Charter School Commission, Kualapu‘u Public Conversion Charter School, Waimea Middle School, Hawaii State Teachers Association, Hawaii Appleseed Center for Law and Economic Justice, Ho‘okāko‘o Corporation, and three individuals.
Your Committee finds that there are thirty-seven charter schools serving approximately twelve thousand students, all of whom should have equal access to appropriate food services, but this is currently not the case. A majority of public charter school students meet the poverty threshold for free or reduced lunch; however, many charter schools report that they are unable to access National School Lunch Program subsidies for a number of reasons. As a result, these schools must either ask students to bring their own lunch or purchase lunch from a vendor or provide lunch to students at the free or reduced rate and waive the subsidy, neither of which is satisfactory or fair to the schools and their students. Providing equal access to food services for charter school students ensures that all public school students are provided quality education and school meals.
Your Committee notes that the Department of Education should find ways to collaborate with public charter schools so that all students have access to appropriate food services.
Your Committee has amended this measure by making technical, nonsubstantive amendments for the purposes of clarity and consistency.
As affirmed by the record of votes of the members of your Committee on Education that is attached to this report, your Committee is in accord with the intent and purpose of S.B. No. 937, as amended herein, and recommends that it pass Second Reading in the form attached hereto as S.B. No. 937, S.D. 1, and be referred to your Committee on Ways and Means.
Respectfully submitted on behalf of the members of the Committee on Education,
MICHELLE N. KIDANI, Chair