‘I can’t believe it’s not a crime’: Brnovich says lawmakers must pass charter school reforms

Then, founder Damian Creamer shifted the school charter to a for-profit company. Last year, that company paid Creamer an $8.8 million “shareholder distribution.” /Primavera Online High School

By Craig Harris | Arizona Republic

Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich is calling for new legislation to provide more oversight of the state’s charter schools in response to the latest Arizona Republic investigation into financial dealings at a major online school.

Brnovich’s remarks came after the Republic reported that Primavera online charter school, which has a dropout rate that’s 10 times higher than the state average, paid Chief Executive Damian Creamer an $8.8 million shareholder distribution. The investigation also found Primavera amassed a $36 million investment portfolio from its share of state education funds instead of using that money to pay teachers and lower class sizes.

“I’m not only shocked, but I’m disappointed,” Brnovich told The Republic. “When you see public money go to line the pockets of someone who is supposed to help students become a millionaire, I can’t believe it’s not a crime.”

Brnovich, a Republican running for re-election, said he’s making his views public in hopes that candidates for the Arizona Legislature will join him in pursuing charter school reform.

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