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Pa. charter reform bill advances, draws criticism

Written by The Associated Press | Nov 4, 2013 2:39 PM
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(Philadelphia) -- Opponents say a bill to overhaul Pennsylvania's charter school law would gut local control over the alternative schools.

The criticism from the Philadelphia-based Education Law Center comes after a Senate committee advanced the legislation. The full body could consider it as early as next week.

Supporters say the bill will provide greater accountability and stronger standards for charter schools, which are publicly funded but operate independently of local districts.

But Education Law Center attorney David Lapp says while the law does need updating, the Senate proposal will do more harm than good.

This is fourth time in two years that legislators have tried to revise the 1997 law governing charter schools.

About 5 percent of students statewide are enrolled in charter or cyber-charter schools.

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