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August 23, 2010

Colorado Awarded $40 Million Federal Charter School Grant

By Erin O'Toole

DENVER, CO (KUNC) - The U-S Department of Education last week awarded 12 charter school grants totaling more than $136 million dollars. Colorado is set to receive more than $40 million over three years to expand public charter schools in the state.

The grant will be used primarily to fund professional development, technology, and to purchase classroom supplies and furniture. Denise Mund is the Director of the Schools of Choice Office with the Colorado Department of Education.

"What's most exciting about it is 95 percent of the money goes directly to the charter schools that are just opening in the state, which now has reached 170."

The remaining five percent of the grant will fund the Schools of Choice Office itself - which supports Colorado's charter schools by collecting data and performing evaluations, and by providing technical assistance to schools and authorizers. Mund says Colorado ranks sixth in the nation for the number of charter schools - which are public schools that don't charge tuition. Even with roughly 35,000 students on waiting lists, Mund says if charter schools made up a single district - it would be the fourth-largest district in the state.

© Copyright 2010, KUNC

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