Supporters call it 'an incredible display of unfairness.'
The possibility of the Frederick Classical Charter School opening in the fall doesn't look too good. On Wednesday, the Board of Education turned down the school's proposed new site on Progress Drive in the Riverside Technology Park. This location replaced one the school abandoned after its request for an 8-year contract was rejected by the Board of Ed.
School officials say this vote could mean that the Frederick Classical Charter School won't open in August, 2012 as planned. "Without a majority vote on the school board, we're going nowhere. That's just the sad reality of it," says Sue Middleton, Spokeswoman and Promotions Director for the Frederick Classical Charter School.
In a memo to the School Board, Superintendent Dr. Theresa Alban said the new facility submitted by the Classical Charter School anticipates a building permit being issued by the City of Frederick by April 30th, and construction to be completed by August, 2012. She recommended the Board deny this request, saying that any delay in the permitting and construction process could "significantly impact" the opening of the school. "To proceed with opening a new school under such pressures in turn creates problems associated with staffing, budgeting, providing the necessary infrastructure, and it can ultimately be disruptive to the education of 280 students," says Dr. Alban in her memo.
Middleton says the Board of Ed pointed out that the Frederick Classical Charter School did not have a principal on board. "Now, that came out of left field, really, because our school has been working with the personnel people at FCPS to get our principal hired," she says.
"Suffice to say, they set parameters for when we could hire and interview and post things, and then they turned around, and told us they couldn't do it in time," she says.
While getting the school up and running for 2012 may be difficult, what about a 2013 opening, Middleton was asked. "The concern for 2013 is will this facility still be around for us in 2013. What additional roadblocks will the FCPS throw in our way," she responded.
So right now, it looks like Frederick Classical Charter School may not open in August, 2012. "The way that it looks right now, I don't see how that can happen," Middleton said. "You can't have a school without teachers. And with FCPS not working with us to bring those teachers on board, then we don't have a way to have a school."
Supporters of the Frederick Classical Charter School plan to hold a rally on Sunday, April 1st from 2:00-3:00 PM in front of the School System Central Office Building on East Street.