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Ohio House OKs bill overhauling charter school oversight

school desk
Flickr Creative Commons
The Ohio Houses passes sweeping reforms for Charter Schools.

Sweeping new performance, accountability and transparency requirements for Ohio's embattled charter-school system have cleared the Ohio House.

The chamber's 91-6 vote Wednesday comes as Ohio prepares for the first installment in a $71 million federal grant to expand charter opportunities that can provide an alternative to traditional public schools. A Senate vote was also expected.

Backers say approval signals Ohio's commitment to improving a charter school sector that's been marred by attendance woes, financial questions and performance lags among some schools.

The legislation makes it easier for high performing charters to expand while specifically labeling the worst charter schools "poor" and forbid "sponsor-hopping" by under-performing charter operators.

It also improves public access to charters' information and clarifies that schools' equipment belongs to the schools, not their operators.