News

Sen. Wagner loans more to midstate charter school

Written by Flint L. McColgan and Angie Mason/York Daily News | Jan 19, 2016 9:05 AM
York_helen_thackston_charter_school.jpg

Helen Thackston Charter School's dean of students, Michael Terwilliger, greets arriving students and parents at an open house in 2015. (Photo: Chris Dunn, York Daily Record)

The Spring Garden Township Republican's loans to York's Thackston Charter School will have grown to nearly $890,000 on Wednesday.

(York) -- State Sen. Scott Wagner's loans to York's Helen Thackston Charter School will reach a little more than $889,000 on Wednesday, he said Monday.

The Spring Garden Township Republican first floated a $400,000 loan to the school in late October to meet missed payroll and to cover basic operating and insurance expenses.

The school has not received any state funding since late June, said Helen Thackston Charter School Board President Danyiell Newman, who confirmed the total loan amount.

Newman said she hopes to begin receiving state funding later this week as part of the second round of state payouts now that part of a state budget is in place.

But Wagner said that the school might not see funding until Jan. 28.

Charter schools typically receive per-student tuition from the school districts where students live. But if issues arise, they can ask to receive payments directly from the state, which then withholds the money from the school district's subsidy.

York's Thackston and Lincoln charter schools have, for years, requested their payments directly from the state instead of the York City School District, where most of their students live.

On Wednesday, Wagner will make a $169,869.73 loan to the school, for an actual total of $889,264.43.

This isn't cash he just has "sitting around," he said, but a personal line of credit that he is serving as a pass-through since the school's lack of state funding has made it harder for it to secure a loan.

Wagner's loans serve to make up the payroll and other budgetary differences, Newman said.

"Money left over from each loan," is part of the funding, Newman explained in a text message. "We also received a refund check for services we were overbilled for."

Without this loan, Wagner said the "530 students in this school who would be dumped on the streets" since cash isn't flowing yet.


This article is part of a content-sharing partnership between WITF and the York Daily Record

Published in News, York

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