charter schools

Charter Schools
4:28 pm
Thu March 29, 2012

Mo. Baptist University to relinquish sponsorship of St. Louis charter schools

(via Flickr/alkruse24)

Missouri’s Department of Elementary and Secondary Education says Missouri Baptist University will relinquish its sponsorship of four charter school systems in St. Louis.

The university’s sponsorship included six schools with the Imagine Academies that had come under fire for poor student performance and deficit spending.

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Education / Charter Schools
5:26 pm
Tue March 20, 2012

Authorization of Mo. Baptist University to sponsor charter schools to be reviewed

(via Flickr/Lauren Manning)

The Missouri State Board will review Missouri Baptist University’s authorization to sponsor charter schools next month.

MBU holds four charters, which include six Imagine Academy schools in St. Louis.

The board will hold a public hearing April 16 in Jefferson City and is expected to a make a decision the next day.

Department of Elementary and Secondary Education spokeswoman Michelle Clark says the board has never revoked a sponsor or even held a public hearing.

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SLPS charter schools
5:12 pm
Thu January 26, 2012

SLPS looks to sponsor two new charters

The St. Louis Public Schools will ask the Mo. State Board of Education for permission to sponsor a charter school that will locate in the vacant Mitchell Elementary, shown here in a Google Maps screenshot.
(screenshot via Google Maps)

The St. Louis Public Schools will ask the Missouri State Board of Education for permission to sponsor a new charter school that will lease space in a vacant district property on the city's north side.

The state board that oversees the district approved the request last night.

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Mo. 2012 legislative session
5:38 pm
Wed January 4, 2012

K-12 funding, Turner fix and "no new taxes" discussed on opening day of Mo. 2012 session

Floor of the Mo. House on opening day of the 2012 regular legislative session.
(Marshall Griffin/St. Louis Public Radio)

The 2012 Missouri legislative session is underway, and much of the first-day talk revolved around the challenges facing the state’s public schools.

In addition to Missouri’s K-12 schools not being fully funded, suburban school districts near St. Louis and Kansas City may be forced to accept thousands of transfer students from the inner cities, thanks to the State Supreme Court’s ruling in Turner v. Clayton.  House Speaker Steven Tilley (R, Perryville) says any solutions to those problems should include tuition tax credits for kids in unaccredited areas, and statewide expansion of charter schools.

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Charter schools
9:53 am
Wed December 21, 2011

New charter school in Hyde Park neighborhood showing success

Better Learning Communities Academy in the Hyde Park neighborhood in St. Louis.
(Alex Taylor/St. Louis Public Radio)

In August, four new charter schools opened in the city of St. Louis. One of the four is Better Learning Communities Academy, a small school for kindergarten through 2nd grade students.

Since the St. Louis Public School District lost its accreditation in 2007, charter schools have been popping up around the city to offer alternate choices for education.

Charter schools are not required to follow a state curriculum and many are reporting scores at drastically low levels.

Better Learning Communities Academy, however, might be one of the new charter schools turning that statistic around.

St. Louis Public Radio’s Alex Taylor takes a look at BLCA after its first semester and reports a brighter side of St. Louis charter schools.

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Education / Charter Schools in St. Louis
12:38 pm
Mon December 19, 2011

2 St. Louis charter schools to close

(via Flickr/Lauren Manning)

Two under-performing St. Louis charter schools will close at the end of the school year.

James French, chairman of Missouri Baptist University's Education Division, which sponsors the schools, announced Monday that Imagine Academy of Academic Success and Imagine Academy of Cultural Arts, will close.

The university, which began sponsoring the schools in 2006, said neither school was living up to academic performance standards, was financially sound, or was showing signs of improvement.

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Education / Charter Schools in St. Louis
6:35 am
Fri August 12, 2011

The Charter School Choice: who holds charter schools accountable?

St. Louis Mayor Francis Slay speaks at a July press conference celebrating new charter Better Learning Communities Academy. Alderman Freeman Bosley, Sr., on the left, with soon-to-be Kindergartener Carl Walker is on the right.
(Maria Altman/St. Louis Public Radio)

There are 20 charter schools in the city of St. Louis, and when classes start Monday, four more will open their doors.

Charters get public funding, but they have more autonomy from the state.

The free schools are a draw for parents who want to avoid the unaccredited St. Louis Public Schools system.

But some charters are performing far below state standards.

And as St. Louis Public Radio’s Maria Altman reports in the second of a two-part series, no one is holding them accountable.

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Education / Charter Schools in St. Louis
6:35 am
Thu August 11, 2011

The Charter School Choice: the effect on St. Louis Public Schools

South City Prep is one of four new charters opening in St. Louis on Monday. It will open to fifth and sixth graders this year. It will eventually serve students through senior high.
(Maria Altman/St. Louis Public Radio)

Classes begin Monday in the St. Louis Public School District.

But four new charter schools also will be opening their doors.

Charters receive public funding but have more freedom with their budgets, staff, and curriculum than traditional public schools.

Many parents in St. Louis welcome the charter alternative and more than a quarter of the city’s students attend charter schools.

As part of a two-part series on charters, St. Louis Public Radio’s Maria Altman looks at how that trend is affecting the city’s public school district.

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St. Louis charter schools
6:22 pm
Wed July 20, 2011

Mayor endorses all four new STL charter schools

St. Louis Mayor Francis Slay speaks at the opening of Better Learning Communities Academy. Carl Walker (seated next to the mayor) will attend Kingergarten at BLCA this fall.
Maria Altman St. Louis Public Radio

St. Louis will have four new charter schools when school begins in a few weeks.

The mayor was on hand when the latest school, Better Learning Communities Academy, announced Wednesday it’s enrolling students.

Mayor Francis Slay has endorsed all four of the charters opening this year.

At the same time he says some of the St. Louis Public Schools are working. 

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MO Statehouse
5:25 pm
Wed May 18, 2011

Mo. education leader rates 2011 session

Missouri Education Commissioner Chris Nicastro
(Mo. Dept. of Elementary and Secondary Education)

Missouri’s top K-12 education official is giving lawmakers mixed grades on the just-completed legislative session.

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