Nobel Learning Communities Inc., a West Chester operator of private schools, said today its operating profit rose 25 percent in its second quarter to 15 cents per share from 12 cents per share in last year's quarter.

The company's net income was $2.2 million, or 21 cents a share, compared with $1.2 million, or 12 cents, a year ago. This year's net income includes a gain of 6 cents a share from a note receivable, a leasehold improvement sale and other special items.

Quarterly revenue rose 12 percent to $45.6 million.

Nobel attributed the gains in the quarter ended Dec. 30 to growth in the number of schools operated, enrollment gains at existing schools, annual tuition increases of 3.5 percent to 4.0 percent, improved school operating margins, and lower cash interest expense. Those factors were partly offset by higher general and administrative expenses.

As of Dec. 30, the Company operated 157 schools in 13 states with the capacity to serve more than 25,000 children. That was seven schools more than the year before. Its shares were up $1.20, or 10 percent, to $12.90 in morning Nasdaq trading.