The Issues with Rented Buildings for Charter Schools

For some charter schools in the United States, things can get complicated when it comes time to pay the rent. Charter schools that rent buildings owned by landlords, such as school districts, may have to give their building back at some point, putting them in a tough spot when trying to keep things afloat for students and staff.

When charter schools rent a building from anyone it puts some parents on edge as well as staff and teachers because the owner can reclaim the building practically whenever they want. After something like this happens, students will have to find a new space to learn and teachers may have to find a new place to work, causing a domino effect of problems beyond just moving spaces.

This kind of thing represents the risks charter schools face across the United States when they lean on districts for something as important as the place in which they teach students. Leasing property can leave schools in the lurch and little recourse when the landlord decides the building the charter school operates out of could be used for something else.

Another issue facing charter schools when it comes to renting properties has to do with rental price. If districts don’t up and move a charter school out of their building, they may still be prone to lifting rental price to something out of the reach of what’s financially viable for the charter.

Having this sort of uncertainty hang overhead can cause unwanted stress among charter school leaders and teachers looking to keep the focus on their students’ education. More than 20 percent of all charter schools in the country rent facilities from traditional school districts. While they serve only a small part of the public school students in the United States, this can all have a big impact in cities with large charter school portions.

What’s more, in cities where students are vied for between charters and public schools, the scales usually tip toward public schools. When a charter school is moved or closed down, this adds to the instability that face many families across the country already. After something like this happens, they have to find a new school to place their children.

Moreover, in cities where charter schools rent buildings and seeing those buildings stripped away, the idea of consolidation is becoming more and more common, bringing multiple charters together under one roof, causing a ripple effect of making parents find new schools altogether.

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