Charter schools receive crucial approval

12:36 PM, Jun 9, 2011   |    comments
  • Share
  • Print
  • - A A A +
Georgia now has 177 charter schools.

ATLANTA -- The Georgia State School board has voted to approve a change that will keep a pair of Georgia charter schools open.

With Thursday's vote, the Odyssey School and Georgia Cyber Academy have now combined to become one school and are officially a state special charter school.

This takes them out of the limbo status that occurred when the state Supreme Court ruled a Charter Schools Commission law unconstitutional.

Other schools affected by the rulilng must also get either approval on the local level or seek the same state special school status.

In the meantime, established charter schools worry about their status as some return to their local school districts for approval.

The fear is the Supreme Court's ruling will affect the way local boards view charter schools in general and make the boards less inclined to approve petitions.

"It's all about us! It's all about us," chanted more than 30 students in kindergarten through fifth grade from Imagine International Academy of Mableton during a break at the Cobb County School board meeting on Wednesday morning.

The board heard staff recommendations on a petition to extend its charter for another two years.

In all, five charter school petitions went before the Cobb School Board during a work session on Wednesday and all have petitions that contain problems, according to school Rob Benson, Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum and Instruction.

Benson told the board the Imagine International School of Mableton's petition contains problem areas.

"There are several concerns existing and they include but are not limited to accountability, financial planning, the facility and planning services for federally identified subgroups," Benson said.

School official and parents remain hopeful they can address the issues and see their extension granted.

"We're encouraged," said Principal Marcus Barber. "We feel strongly that our charter will be approved. We feel we have met their concerns in the past."

The board will vote on the school's petition on at its next meeting on June 23. School officials will have a chance to comment prior to the meeting.

Most Watched Videos