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Portland Mayor Asks Maine AG to Investigate Charter School
03/22/2013   Reported By: Tom Porter

Portland Mayor Michael Brennan is asking Maine Attorney General Janet Mills to suspend contract negotiations with the Baxter Academy for Technology and Science while a formal review is conducted. The Portland-based charter school - due to open its doors this fall - hit the headlines earlier this month when the board of directors fired the school's founder and chief executive, John Jaques amid allegations of financial mismanagement. Jaques, meanwhile, claims he was ousted because one of the school's major donors requested it. Charter schools are publicly-financed but run independently of the public school system. Supporters say charter schools aim to offer students more flexibility. Maine Things Considered host Tom Porter spoke with Mayor Brennan - a strong opponent of charter schools. Brennan says he wants the AG to review several aspects of the Baxter Academy situation.

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Portland Mayor Asks Maine AG to Investigate Charte Listen
 Duration:
3:4

Portland Mayor Michael Brennan

Portland Mayor Michael Brennan with a copy of the letter he sent to Maine Attorney General Janet Mills.

Maine Things Considered host Tom Porter talks with Portland Mayor Michael Brennan today in his City Hall office.

The Maine Attorney General's office says it has no comment yet on Mayor Brennan's letter. The Maine Attorney General's office says it has no comment yet on Mayor Brennan's letter.

Jana Lapoint, chair of the Maine Charter School Commission, expressed disappointment that Mayor Brennan didn't contact them directly before writing to the AG. "We would have given him any answers he would care to have," she says. "Also all our files are open, he could have read anything he needed to, so I'm disappointed he didn't choose to call us directly."

Lapoint says Baxter Academy's application for a charter is being reviewed by the commission at a hearing on Monday.

Photo by Tom Porter.


 

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