Public funding of California’s charter schools now tops $6 billion annually. Despite this substantial investment, governments at all levels are unable to proactively monitor the private groups that operate charter schools for fraud and waste. Most public school districts aren’t given adequate resources to oversee operators, especially large charter management organizations (CMOs), while all lack the statutory authority to effectively monitor and hold charter schools accountable.

This report builds on existing research to show that, due to this lack of oversight, an untold amount of public funding is being lost each year. Only the tip of the iceberg is visible, but this much is known: total alleged and confirmed fraud and waste in California’s charter schools has reached over $149 million.


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