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Minnesota Charter Schools Ranked Best in America

Posted at: 01/29/2013 6:38 PM
By: Katie Eldred

(ABC 6 NEWS) -- A national organization has named Minnesota as the top dog when it comes to charter schools. Which in a way makes sense, the first charter school in the nation was established in St. Paul in 1992.

Like many of their peers each one of these four Rochester Off Campus, or ROC Charter School students has their own reason for choosing the school.

"I was unhappy very depressed and very uncomfortable," said Bonnie Barnett.

"I needed to be held accountable for all the wrong things I was doing," said Haley Bartsch.

"I just needed more help and I didn't feel comfortable asking," said Libby Heilskob.

Each of them says they are grateful to have the option of a charter school.

"The teachers actually know how you’re doing before they move on, they make sure you’re getting what you should," said Conner O'Reilly.

"It's just fantastic," said Barnett.

According to the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools, their love of their school should be no surprise.

The Alliance ranks Minnesota number one in the country when it comes to charter school laws.

"There's nobody that must attend ROC charter high school, it's a choice," said Jay Martini.

ROC administrator, Jay Martini, says Minnesota sets the precedent for how charter schools should be.

"In the terms of being able to be creative and innovative, and meet the needs of your student population," said Martini.

He says because Minnesota charter schools belong to their own separate district, they can better meet the needs of the students. Whether that be language, arts, or even STEM schools.

A trait that he says makes their student body unlike any other.

"There are very few other schools in the state that can say everybody in this house chose to come here."

These ROC charter students say they have definitely benefited from Minnesota's top ranking charter school law.

"I actually do really good in school now, I like school and my classes," said O'Reilly.

"I pretty much failed all my classes, but now I have a 3.7 GPA,"  said Bartsch.

The Rochester Off Campus Charter High School has been open for almost 20 years now.