Charter School Finance

Uniquely Qualified for Charter School Finance

Our Public Finance team has been providing sophisticated legal assistance through the myriad of local, state and national laws and regulations to develop financing structures and secure necessary funds for charter schools.

We have assisted a wide variety of charter schools throughout the United States, developed innovative school bond financings and participated in policy and legislative activities designed to meet unique challenges and achieve a comprehensive range of purposes.

We have worked with the financing and refinancing of a wide variety of charter school projects, including working capital projects such as teaching specialists, administrative staff, Internet access, after-school and summer programs, pupil transportation, kindergarten programs, extracurricular offerings, information technology, and athletic and musical opportunities, as well as capital projects such as the acquisition and construction of new campuses, the furnishing and equipping of facilities, and infrastructure improvements.

Our public finance lawyers have handled thousands of public finance transactions, including an increasing number of tax-exempt, tax-credit and taxable financings for charter schools.

Policy & Legislative Activities

  • We are engaged by the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools to analyze the public versus private character of charter schools in each of the 44 states that authorize charter schools under a variety of federal laws, including the Internal Revenue Code, the Securities Act, the National Labor Relations Act, the Social Security Act and other laws.
  • We have worked on a pro bono basis in support of the Washington State charter school law (opposing the constitutional challenge to the newly enacted law).
  • Our lawyers drafted amendments to the California Education Code as enabling legislation to authorize and allocate Qualified School Construction Bond tax credit volume cap to California charter schools.
  • We drafted amendments to the California School Finance Authority Act to expand the power of the Authority to:
    1. Provide working capital loans to charter schools
    2. Expand the scope of the statutory intercept mechanism for bond repayment
    3. Expand the definition of “Program Participant” to include entities other than charter schools (e.g., limited liability companies working with a charter school to provide facilities)
  • Our lawyers drafted provisions of previous Los Angeles Unified School District bond.
  • We drafted Proposition Z (Nov 2012) for San Diego Unified School District, which provides an explicit allocation of district bond proceeds for charter school facilities.

Sector Expansion & Education Activities

  • Our lawyers routinely present workshops and seminars for charter school operators, authorizers, finance professionals and bond investors, including recently for the Opportunity Finance Network, Northeast Charter Schools Network, National Alliance for Public Charter Schools, Alliance of Public Charter School Attorneys, California Charter Schools Association and The Bond Buyer (national webinar).

Our lawyers, in association with the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools, published Charter Schools: Borrowing with Tax-Exempt Bonds, a booklet designed to provide an introduction to charter school facilities financing for operators, boards members and related organizations.

  • Rocketship Education (2014)

    We pioneered the financing of a start-up school, including construction financing, as part of an obligated group of cross-collateralized charter schools.

    Bronx Charter School for Excellence (2013)

    We represented Bronx Charter School for Excellence in the first investment-grade rated issue of tax-exempt bonds through Build New York City Resource Corporation (the only NYC issuer of charter school bonds).

    Alliance for College Ready Public Schools (2012)

    We pioneered the refinancing and re-investment of New Markets Tax Credit loan proceeds for a second facility construction project during the same 7-year tax credit period using tax-exempt bonds as take-out funding.

    Vaughn Next Century Learning Center (2011)

    We pioneered the use of Federal Home Loan Bank letter of credit support for a QSCB financing, resulting in 0 percent interest cost for the charter school borrower.

    High Tech High (2011)

    We structured the first issue of Qualified School Construction Bonds for a charter school (nation-wide), recognized as "Deal of the Year" by The Bond Buyer.

    Aspire Public Schools (2010)

    We structured the first multi-campus tax-exempt financing using a cross-collateralized structure in California, and the largest single issue of tax-exempt bonds to date ($93 million) for charter school facilities.