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Sundquist said the application and review process has been a learning experience for everyone involved.

He said he feels good about how smoothly it has gone and how the commission and other key players - including the State Board of Education - demanded high standards for these new schools.

“We’ve come to a good place and I’m frankly feeling pretty good,” Sundquist said.

The one outcome Sundquist was surprised by was the dearth of applications from Eastern Washington. He hopes that will change in the future.

The process begins again later this spring. People who want to open a charter school in Washington will need to submit a notice of intent to the statewide commission or the Spokane school district by June 15. Their applications are due July 15. Decisions on the next batch of schools will be made by Oct. 15.

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Contact Donna Blankinship at https://twitter.com/dgblankinship

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Online:

Charter School Commission: http://is.gd/0EsilY

State Board of Education: http://is.gd/zi1ywP