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OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — Oklahoma will be receiving a funding boost of $16.5 million in federal funds to open and expand charter schools across the state.

The Oklahoma Public School Resource Center will be receiving the grant from the U.S. Department of Education over the next five years, The Oklahoman reported. The resource center is a nonprofit that works with charter schools and traditional public schools.

“This is pretty big,” said Brent Bushey, executive director of the center. “The amount for the size of our state is pretty large.”

The grant will be used to create more charter schools in the state that focus on serving educationally disadvantaged students.

U.S. Education Secretary Betsy DeVoss said the grant will create more education options for students.

“What started as a handful of schools in Minnesota has blossomed into nearly 7,000 charter schools across the country,” DeVos said. “Charter schools are now part of the fabric of American education, and I look forward to seeing how we can continue to work with states to help ensure more students can learn in an environment that works for them.”

Bushey said the center will be working with the state Department of Education throughout the funding implementation process.

Oklahoma currently has nearly 30 charter schools, most of which are in Oklahoma City and Tulsa.


Information from: The Oklahoman,