The New York Times

A South Bronx charter school has been put on probation for what city education officials called “serious violations” of state law mandating random admissions, including possibly testing or interviewing applicants before their enrollment.

The school, Academic Leadership Charter School, opened in 2009 and is the first New York City charter to be disciplined for violating the rules for random admissions.

The violations go to the crux of the debate over charters, which are publicly financed but independently operated. Random admissions is a key tenet in most states, but critics have long contended that the schools surreptitiously weed out students who are unlikely to do well on standardized tests or are more difficult to educate.

In a letter sent to Academic Leadership’s board on Tuesday, the executive director of the city’s charter school office, Recy Dunn, accused the school of twice violating state admissions laws, and described a school in chaos from “a pattern of failed operational oversight by school leadership.”

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