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Oklahoma Charter School Receives National Honor

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) _ A national organization has named an Oklahoma City charter school as one of its 53 National Charter Schools of the Year.

Western Village Academy, the first elementary charter school in Oklahoma, received the honor Wednesday from the Washington, D.C.-based Center for Education Reform, which said it based the award on academic achievement, innovation and accountability.

The schools on the list received $500 each. Western Village Academy, operated by Integris Health, is the only Oklahoma school on the national list. There are about 4,000 charter schools in the United States.

Tobi Campbell is Western Village Academy's director.

Last fall, the Center for Education Reform asked charter schools to respond to a survey, then invited a small percentage of the schools that responded to send in additional information to be considered for the honor.

Areas evaluated by the national organization included achievement, planning and execution, satisfaction and policies and programs.

``Charter schools across the nation succeed despite limited resources and oftentimes hostile bureaucratic environments,'' said Jeanne Allen, the president of the national organization.

``They are the heroes in a civil rights struggle for educational choice, particularly for children and parents of limited means. We're delighted to recognize some truly shining examples.''
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