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City Controller Criticizes Charter Operators In New Report

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) -- Philadelphia's city controller has released a report critical of the management of two charter school operators on the eve of a key vote.

City Controller Alan Butkovitz examined Universal Companies and Aspira, two charter operators that have four schools facing Thursday renewal decisions by the School Reform Commission. Butkovitz found that Aspira had a dance studio at its headquarters, and that several board members of universal's charter school served on the boards of other Universal companies.

"You can't be on both sides of the transaction," Butkovitz said. "You can't be on the board that is taking out a lease on property and also be on the board of the organization that owns the property."

Butkovitz says his report is not directed at the SRC. Rather, it's meant as a call to the legislature to overhaul the state charter law, which hasn't been substantially updated since its adoption in 1997.


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