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Charter school bill advances in Tennessee House

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Posted at 12:58 PM, Apr 17, 2019
and last updated 2019-04-17 13:58:04-04

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — The Tennessee House has advanced a proposal that would create a new state charter school commission to manage charter school appeals if operators are denied by a local school board.

House members voted 61-37 on Wednesday. It must still pass the Senate.

The legislation is backed by Gov. Bill Lee, although the current version is drastically scaled-back from the original bill he pitched that would have allowed charter school operators to bypass local school boards when seeking to open a new facility.

Lee says the bill is needed to make it easier to open high-quality charter schools and shutter poor performing ones.

Currently, the state Board of Education handles the appeals. However, under the proposed bill, a nine-member governor-appointed commission would be in charge of such appeals.