Education | News

Online Charter Schools Must Take Students

OPB | March 7, 2013 9:42 p.m. | Portland

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Oregon’s board of education told the state’s own online charter schools Thursday that they have to accept students, even if they’re coming from districts having labor problems.

The Northwest Regional Education Service District runs two online charters called Oregon Virtual Education East – in Sherman County, and West - in Gaston.

Their director, Paul Peterson, says the charters  work with schools all over Oregon to offer supplemental courses online.

Peterson says that requires good working relationships with administrators and teachers. He says the charters didn’t want to be seen as stealing students away in the middle of a labor conflict.

So, the charters applied for a waiver to allow them to keep students from enrolling at least temporarily, if there was a labor dispute happening. 

Peterson says the board’s denial is disappointing, if not surprising.

“Yeah, I think potentially it could have a negative effect. But I don’t think this is going to erode the trust substantially, because they know that we have tried.”

Oregon Virtual Education East and West opened this school year. Non-profits have run online charters since at least 2005.

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