Gov. vetoes virtual school moratorium as Maine Senate approves it

Friday, March 7, 2014

A bill to put the brakes on the creation of virtual charter schools in Maine was approved by the Senate on Thursday and quickly vetoed by Gov. Paul LePage.

The bill aimed to stop the creation of virtual schools while the Department of Education develops its own online offerings, an initiative which was ordered by Gov. Paul LePage in 2012. LePage’s executive order called for the department to develop a plan and present it to the Legislature by January 2013.

In his veto letter, LePage wrote of the importance of a “‘blended learning’ model wherein students in traditional education environments can gain access to courses that are not offered in their school. This too is a critical piece of a well-rounded educational picture.” But, he wrote, blended learning and virtual programs are very different, so putting a moratorium on one doesn’t benefit the other.

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