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Tennessee Becomes Friendlier to Charter Schools

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Latest in Series of Positive Actions Taken By State Lawmakers 

CER Press Release
Washington, D.C.
April 14, 2014

The Tennessee House of Representatives took the final approval measure necessary to pass HB 0702, which significantly increases the likelihood of expanding quality charter schools across the state. The bill will now head to Governor Haslam’s desk.

“After nearly two years of deliberation, it’s wonderful to see Tennessee lawmakers support a surefire method of expanding quality charter schools,” said Kara Kerwin, president of The Center for Education Reform. “I wholeheartedly commend Rep. Mark White and Sen. Dolores Gresham for their leadership in advancing this important piece of legislation one step closer to the finish line.”

As amended, this bill grants chartering authority to the State Board of Education in the event a charter school application is denied by local authorities, allowing quality charter school applications a chance to go forward despite initial resistance. The State Board will then be able to oversee charter schools to best ensure the success of charter administrators and the students they serve.

“The actions taken by the House today are part of a larger, exciting trend of Tennessee embracing reforms with a proven track record. From charter schools to vouchers, Tennessee lawmakers are showing a renewed interest in giving parents access to the educational choices they deserve,” Kerwin said.