New Mexico seeks charter school standards

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SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — New Mexico's public education secretary is urging state lawmakers to establish standards for closing charter schools that do not measure up to academic standards and financial controls.

Public Education Secretary Hanna Skandera on Wednesday told members of the state Legislative Finance Committee it was important to hold charter schools accountable by developing new standards. She also says it's important to acknowledge excellence in charter-school education and share recipes for success.

New Mexico's state auditor recently has reported financial control problems and missing files on background checks and teacher licenses at state-sponsored charter schools overseen by the Public Education Department.

New Mexico has turned to charter schools amid some dissatisfaction with traditional schools. The number of state-sponsored charter schools grew to 59 last year from just two in 2008.

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