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Opponents voice concerns about opening more independent charter schools

MADISON, WI (WTAQ) - Those involved in Wisconsin public schools spoke out today against a bill making it easier to open independent charter schools.  

Right now, about 80 percent of the state's 243 charter schools are run by public school systems. The new measure would let more groups create those schools -- like UW and technical college campuses.

An Assembly committee held a public hearing on the bill Thursday. Supporters said it would allow for more innovative specialized schools. Opponents -- including various public school groups -- said it would take away money from the public systems, eliminate school board oversight and regional limits on attendance, and jeopardize federal money for existing charter schools.  

Supporters disagreed that charter schools would mushroom statewide. They said it would fill a need in areas that want such schools.  

Assembly Speaker Robin Vos wanted some type of charter school legislation in the current session. Senate action is uncertain before the session ends in April.

(Story courtesy of Wheeler News Service)