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House Speaker Says Philly Charter School Action Could Imperil Funding

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) -- The state House Speaker is suggesting that Philadelphia school funding could be affected because of what he called "overreaches" by the district charter school office.

The School Reform Commission Monday night renewed eight charters, non-renewed Laboratory charter and tabled action on Memphis Street Academy. This, on a day when House Speaker Mike Turzai warned that it would be tough to justify more funding for Philly schools if the district put up roadblocks to charter renewals. Charter operators - including Boys Latin CEO David Hardy -- say the district is forcing them to sign burdensome renewal agreements.

"This group of conditions is something we've never seen before," Hardy said. "They've overreached in this whole thing."

Including forbidding charters from using per-pupil revenue for outside real estate deals, and outlining how often charter boards should meet.

"I would hate to see the Speaker pull funding for public education in Philadelphia," said SRC chair Joyce Wilkerson. "We're not asking for anything other than compliance with state law in most instances."

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