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March 4, 2013

Greenfield shuts state's 1st public virtual school

GREENFIELD, Mass. (AP) — Greenfield officials have voted to shut Massachusetts’ first public virtual school four years after it opened.

The Daily Hampshire Gazette reports that the Greenfield School Committee voted unanimously to not submit an application to be a “commonwealth virtual school.” That’s a public school controlled by the state and structured like a charter school that would teach Massachusetts students via the Internet.

The Massachusetts Virtual Academy, a three-year-old Greenfield public school that teaches 470 students, will close June 30.

A law passed this January gives the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education authority over any future Massachusetts virtual schools.

Mayor William Martin said that the department of elementary and secondary education does not support Greenfield’s school and he believes the state should take up the responsibility of running a virtual school program.

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