News in Brief

Pa. School District Not Liable for Charter-Teacher Pensions

Article Tools
  • PrintPrinter-Friendly
  • EmailEmail Article
  • ReprintReprints
  • CommentsComments

In a precedent-setting ruling, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court said a school district is not liable for paying pension contributions that a closed charter school failed to make to a state pension fund for teachers.

Ruling in a case brought by the Pocono Mountain school district, the court said that requiring a school district to pay the outstanding retirement debt of a defunct charter school violates the state's charter school law.

The ruling has important implications for districts statewide because it resolves a conflict within the charter school law regarding what constitutes a "debt" of a charter school, said the Pocono Mountain district's solicitor, John Freund.

The dispute centered on the former Pocono Mountain Charter School's failure to deposit $87,700 in pension contributions it owed for its teachers.

The school shut down after the district revoked its charter in June 2014, based on concerns over financial improprieties.

By law, a charter school is responsible for paying in to the pension system.

In this case, the school district had no way to recoup its money because the charter school already was closed. Its request for a refund from the state education department was denied.

Vol. 36, Issue 17, Page 4

Published in Print: January 11, 2017, as Pa. School District Not Liable for Charter-Teacher Pensions
Related Stories
Notice: We recently upgraded our comments. (Learn more here.) If you are logged in as a subscriber or registered user and already have a Display Name on edweek.org, you can post comments. If you do not already have a Display Name, please create one here.
Ground Rules for Posting
We encourage lively debate, but please be respectful of others. Profanity and personal attacks are prohibited. By commenting, you are agreeing to abide by our user agreement.
All comments are public.

Back to Top Back to Top

Most Popular Stories

Viewed

Emailed

Recommended

Commented