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New Charter Schools Can Open In 2012

New charter schools will open as soon as next school year. They'll be the first ones to open since the North Carolina legislature lifted the cap on charter schools this year. Charters aren't governed by local school boards, but do receive public tax dollars. This summer the Republican-led General Assembly decided to no longer limit the number of charter schools in the state to one-hundred. But new charters couldn't open until the fall of 2013, since the state board of education required a one-year planning period for new charters before it would approve them. This week the board decided to forego that period for schools that applied last year, but weren't granted a charter because of the cap. Those schools can apply again by November 10. The board plans to make its decisions in February, in time for the new schools to open next fall. There are already eighteen charter schools in the Charlotte-area, most of them in Mecklenburg County.