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Charter schools get boost from state school board

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The Utah Board of Education Friday approved guidelines that will help put $2 million in state-approved funds into the hands of charter schools.

The 2003 Legislature set up the $2 million account that allows charter schools to apply for low-interest loans.

The new rules adopted by the board state that schools applying for the loan need charter approval from their local or state boards of education.

Critics from Education Excellence Utah say the money still doesn't put charter schools on par with funding for public education. And the rules, said executive director Royce Van Tassell, still present a problem in having to seek permission to start a school from the very system with which it is competing.

Van Tassell pointed to a recent Harvard study that calls Utah's charter school law "crippling" to back up his criticism.