Alabama House panel approves charter school bill - WTVM.com-Columbus, GA News Weather & Sports

Alabama House panel approves charter school bill

By BOB JOHNSON
Associated Press

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) - The Alabama Legislature has taken the first step toward passing legislation that would authorize 20 charter schools in Alabama.

These would be taxpayer-funded schools that would operate outside the regulations most public schools must follow.

The House Ways and Means-Education Committee voted 9-6 Thursday morning to approve the measure that now goes to the full House. The creation of charter schools is supported by Republican Gov. Robert Bentley and by GOP legislative leadership. The Alabama Education Association and most Democrats in the Legislature oppose the measure.

The committee vote was mostly along party lines with only Republican Rep. Jeremy Oden of Vinemont switching sides and voting against the bill.

Democrats complained the bill was rushed to a vote and more time was needed to study the issue.

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