Charter schools forced to close due to bad test scores

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By Tami Hoey By Tami Hoey

PHOENIX -- The State of Arizona is set to shut down several charter schools. The reason? Bad grades.

On Monday, Omega Charter School on Northern Ave. and 86th Ave. was told they no longer made the grade. The K-12 school joined two others that were also notified on Monday.

Those schools, the Jefferson Academy of Advanced Learning in Show Low and the Kin Da Linchii Olta Charter School in Ganado, join two other charter schools that had already closed due to failing test scores.

"It's historic to have three charter schools ordered closed in one day," says Eileen Sigmund, President of the Arizona Charter School Association.

The schools, which have the opportunity to appeal the ruling by the Arizona State Board for Charter Schools, will likely remain operating until the end of the school year next summer.

"This is the first I'm hearing about it." said Sabra Gault, when 3TV informed her that Omega, her kindergartener's school had three years of failing grades.

Other parents we talked to hadn't been notified of the school's problems, either. But Omega senior, Michael Windahl says he's not surprised.

"It's been really bad here for the past two years," Windahl said. While he only needs five and a half more credits to graduate, he says he feels sorry for the younger students, who may now be forced to find a new school.

Next year, a staggering 41 Arizona charter schools are in danger of losing their licenses due to poor AIMS test scores.  If you'd like to see how your child's charter school is doing, check the Arizona Charter School's Assiciation's web site at