Wednesday, January 10, 2018

New Charter School Files to Open in Seattle

The district has been notified by the Washington State Charter Commission that a group seeks to open a K-8 charter school in SE Seattle at 4413 39th Ave SW in 2019.  (The building appears to be a former house.)

The closest SPS schools are Cooper-Boren K-8 and Genesee Hill and two private schools. 
Editor's note: got SW in my head and the address is South.  That places this school nearer to Hawthorne and Dearborn Park.

It is to be called Ashe Prep Academy.  It will start with K-2 and 6th.

The lead on this effort is Dr. Debra Sullivan who is the President of the Seattle Affiliate of the National Black Child Development Institute (NBCDI).

To note, what the Charter Commission received is just a notice of interest (NOI).  Notices of Intent (NOI) to Apply were due on December 1, 2017 and the WSCSC received four.

The other three are:

- the Academy of Empowerment, a K-8 language immersion in Federal Way  (French and Spanish)

- Fursan School, a K-12 that would start with Pre-K, K-2, in "King County" and be a bilingual STEM school.

I was interested in the name and found this from Wiki:
Al Fursan ( in English The Knights) is the aerobatics demonstration team of the United Arab Emirates Air Force

-Intergenerational High School, an arts/STEM school, in Whatcom County. 

Among what they hope to provide for students is this: Experiential and Phenomenon-based, Intergenerational mentorship.

All three hope to open in 2019.

6 comments:

Anonymous said...

Great news! It sounds like charters are working to fill needs SPS is unwilling or unable to meet.

Happy

Anonymous said...

Seriously, how do we get charters in the north end ?

StepB

Melissa Westbrook said...

Step B, well, the problem is that the law is written to given preference to serving at-risk, minority students so the north-end is unlikely to meet that. But there is nothing in the law stopping someone from opening one. I suspect it has to do with the legal challenges. It's a lot of money and effort even to apply for a charter.

Jet City mom said...

According to OSPI information, Northgate has 75.5% low income students, Olympic Hills has 74.6% low income students and Broadview Thompson has 56.2 low income students.

Great need is not just in the south end and it is about time for the city and the district to stop acting like it is.

Melissa Westbrook said...

That's true and it will interesting to see what happens going forward.

Again, Washington's law is tough and so is the process; it's harder than it might seem. I am glad that our Charter Commission is making sure that good, viable charters are okayed.

Dora Taylor said...

You don't want one of these charter schools in your neighborhood. The short of it is that these schools target minority and low income neighborhoods because they are easy targets and offer only the basics in education. Some of these schools offer mostly online classes as a substitute for classroom interaction. The teachers are usually uncertified and many are Teach for America recruits with no background in education and fresh out of college. There are also no unions with the exception of one charter chain.

As Melissa says, if you want an alternative school, start your own just as Nova was established and other option schools in Seattle.

With option schools, I believe there is still an all-school draw which decreases the chances for segregation, one thing that charter schools have aggravated. See: Choice Without Equity:
 Charter School Segregation and the Need for Civil Rights Standards, https://www.civilrightsproject.ucla.edu/research/k-12-education/integration-and-diversity/choice-without-equity-2009-report.

Also US charter schools put growing numbers in racial isolation, https://apnews.com/e9c25534dfd44851a5e56bd57454b4f5.

For a primer on charter schools see What is a Charter School?, https://seattleducation.com/charter-schools/what-is-a-charter-school/.