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Report Says Charter School Laws In WY Need Work

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A recent report assessing policies on charter schools throughout the nation says Wyoming has a lot of work to do to make charter schools more accessible and successful. The Executive Director of the Wyoming Association of Public Charter Schools is not surprised.  Kari Cline says Wyoming’s rules are bad and stagnant. 

“We’ve gotten a bad grade on that report every year. This year is nothing new or surprising. We did drop a couple of states back and I think that’s largely due to the fact that we haven’t changed anything in our statutes and there are several other states around the country that are making improvements in theirs,” Cline says.

“Key components that need to be addressed would be an authorizing structure that would include another entity besides just the local school board,” Cline says. “And I also think we need to really look carefully at policies that we built in that allow for good accountability measures and to keep strengthening the quality of charter schools that open in the state.”

The legislature passed a bill last sessions to ease the creation of alternative schools in the state, but Cline says the new law doesn’t apply to charter schools.

Irina Zhorov is a reporter for Wyoming Public Radio. She earned her BA from the University of Pennsylvania and an MFA from the University of Wyoming. In between, she worked as a photographer and writer for Philadelphia-area and national publications. Her professional interests revolve around environmental and energy reporting and she's reported on mining issues from Wyoming, Mexico, and Bolivia. She's been supported by the Dick and Lynn Cheney Grant for International Study, the Eleanor K. Kambouris Grant, and the Social Justice Research Center Research Grant for her work on Bolivian mining and Uzbek alpinism. Her work has appeared on Voice of America, National Native News, and in Indian Country Today, among other publications.
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