Education Bill Contains Charter School Changes

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The general assembly has passed provisions to clarify how the state should handle under-performing charter schools. Starting in the 2008-2009 school year, schools facing a fourth consecutive year of the state's lowest ranking of academic emergency would have 1-2 years to show improvement in reading and math scores.

Lawmakers also passed provisions to tweak the oversight boards of Charter Schools and require parental involvement polices. Finally, public schools with empty buildings, and without future plans to use them, will be required to offer to sell them to charter schools at fair market values. If, in the future, the charter school opts to sell that building, it must offer it first to the original district, also at a fair market price.

These provisions were attached to House Bill 79, which requires school districts to run criminal background checks on teachers every five years when teachers renew their licenses. Lisa Ann Pinkerton, 90.3.

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