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      Some parents leaning towards alternative schooling options

      Charter schools are growing in popularity throughout the state. Among the 17 open enrollment charter schools in the state, the Little Rock area holds the most amount.According to a recent University of Arkansas study there are funding disparities between district and charter schools in the same geographic area.

      Open enrollment charter schools in the area received 26.2 percent less funding than district schools.John Bacon, Director of e-STEM Public Charter School said parents are leaning towards alternative school options. "Charters are one of the newer things in the game where within the last seven years since we've been here more charters have been open in the area and I think people are just looking for that option,"said Bacon.Valerie Tatum, founder of Covenant Keepers Charter School, said some parents do not realize there is not tuition payment required to send their child to a charter school."We are all free. Sometimes there might be a cost of maybe a uniform or supplies or things of that nature but there's really ultimately no cost to attend a charter school," said Tatum.Most charter schools are already in session.

      The Little Rock Public School district starts on Aug. 18.

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