Charter schools are public schools operated by independent organizations under agreements approved by state or local education officials.
The schools in question were granted charters by Louisiana's Board of Elementary and Secondary Education. But they were funded through a state education formula that distributes money to individual local school districts.
That funding method was challenged by education officials in some local districts and by a teacher union. The challengers said it's unconstitutional to fund the state-chartered schools with money meant for local systems.
The state 1st Circuit Court of Appeal in Baton Rouge agreed Monday. With an estimated $80 million in question, the case is expected to go to Louisiana's Supreme Court.