Will Nebraska allow charter schools?
- Nebraska's Omaha Public Schools Board may throw its weight behind an expected bill that would allow charter schools in the state.
- The state is one of eight remaining that do not allow charter schools, and several previous bills to introduce them have failed.
- If charter schools are approved in the state, a resolution under consideration by the Omaha board would allow them to operate under strict guidelines that would include local school board oversight.
The latest attempt to give charters the OK in the state is seen as having a pretty good chance of passing given the state's new legislators and governor, even though Governor-elect Pete Ricketts has stated they're not a top priority in his education agenda. Still, the Omaha Public Schools Board sees its resolution as a means of staying ahead of the game, avoiding political infighting on the topic by providing reassurance that any school choice options expanded will adhere to stringent standards.
Additionally, several members of the Omaha board are opposed to charters on the grounds that they drain taxpayer funding from public schools and exclude special needs and English-language-learning students.
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