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Little oversight of profitable charter school

The Philadelphia Inquirer's Connie Langland and Dale Mezzacappa report on a charter school's manager "who has turned Chester Community Charter School into a profitable, expanding business in the heart of the virtually bankrupt school district." Vahan H. Gureghian's Charter School Management Inc. has a 20-year contract with the school's board of trustees that both have refused to make public. The county has paid the company about $10 million since 1999 for management, with a large percent of that going toward Gureghian's management fee. The agency charged with overseeing the school's finances "says it has been too preoccupied with the district's own fiscal woes — now being investigated by the state attorney general — to even ask for basic documents from Chester Community. The Inquirer's examination of the school's finances was based on state data and financial reports and six years of federal tax filings ending in 2003-04, the most recent year available."

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