charter schools

Local News
3:24 pm
Wed November 12, 2014

New Charlotte Area Charter Schools Have Fewer Students Than Expected

Concrete Roses STEM Academy closed one month after the start of the school year.
Credit Tasnim Shamma

New charter schools in the Charlotte area only received two-thirds of the students they expected this year. 

Nine charter schools opened this year in the Charlotte area.  Concrete Roses STEM Academy closed after the first month.  The remaining schools expected to receive about 2,400 students, but according to the state department of public instruction only 1,643 enrolled. 

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NC News
9:56 am
Mon October 20, 2014

NC Businessman Turns Profit From Public Education Dollars

There’s a profit to be made off charter schools: charter school boards can hire for-profit companies to manage schools. Many charters in North Carolina are run this way. But should the owner of a for-profit company also have a seat on the charter school board that selects the company? That was long the case with Baker Mitchell. He owns a management company that runs four charter schools in the eastern part of the state. ProPublica’s Marian Wang took a look at Mitchell and his company Roger Bacon Academy. She joins Morning Edition host Marshall Terry to discuss.


Local News
9:52 am
Fri September 19, 2014

Charter School Closing Highlights Rapid Growth Of NC Charters

A brand new charter school that opened in Charlotte on August 25 is shutting down. State officials sent Concrete Roses STEM Academy a letter this week placing the school on what the state calls Financial Disciplinary Status. The school's board voted Wednesday night to close the charter program as of Friday. This fall's enrollment of 126 students at Concrete Roses, located off Monroe Road, was far below the 300 students organizers had projected. WFAE's Mark Rumsey spoke with Helen Nance, who chairs North Carolina's Charter School Advisory Board, about the closure of Concrete Roses and the oversight of the state's charter schools.


Local News
8:42 am
Fri September 19, 2014

Parents Say Charter School Closing Was Short Notice

Nine-year-old Kenyatta Booker and his mother Brandy Mmnabar. Mmnabar says she was very angry when she found out that the school would be closing down the next day when she went to pick up her son.
Credit Tasnim Shamma

Friday was the last day of school for about 120 students at a charter school in east Charlotte. It's closing its doors less than three weeks after opening because of financial troubles. Parents will now have to figure out where to send their children next week.


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Local News
3:23 pm
Thu September 18, 2014

Charter School Closing After 20 Days. Cost To State: $285,170

Concrete Roses STEM Academy in East Charlotte will have its last school day on Friday, September 19.
Credit Tasnim Shamma

A Charlotte charter school is closing its doors less than three weeks after opening, leaving 126 students to find a new school.

Parents of students at Concrete Roses STEM Academy got their first hint of trouble earlier this week.

"Everybody got the same call or e-mail that there was an emergency board meeting," says Shirley Brooks.

Her granddaughter, Taylor, is a fourth-grader at the K-12 school, which closes Friday.

"I had no idea that this could happen on a new school like this. I had no idea," Brooks says.

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Local News
11:20 am
Fri August 8, 2014

Headline Roundup: Charter School Salaries, Immigration, Insurance Fraud And More

Update 1:10 PM

South Carolina Attorney General Alan Wilson says insurance fraud complaints in the state have reached a historic high, with more than 1,200 last year. Wilson’s office last year prosecuted cases that resulted in 37 convictions and resulted in more than $700,000 being returned to the victims of insurance fraud. The report notes that in one Darlington County case, three defendants sought payment from a health insurance company claiming they each had all four limbs amputated. None of the defendants had lost their limbs and one was convicted and sent to prison for 18 months. The report notes that since 1995, almost 14,000 insurance fraud complaints have been received by the state Attorney General's office.

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Charlotte Observer
11:10 am
Fri July 25, 2014

Cotham: New Senate Bill Shields Salaries Of For-profit Charter School Staff

Cotham
Credit N.C. General Assembly

Conflict over disclosure of charter-school salaries flared anew Thursday as House Democrats said a Senate-approved bill shields for-profit management companies from revealing who they hire and how much they pay.

In a Thursday evening news conference, Rep. Tricia Cotham, D-Mecklenburg, led the call for the public and Gov. Pat McCrory to fight a move that she says blocks accountability and transparency at charter schools, which are run by nonprofit boards and funded with public money.

“It’s a simple principle: The public should know where public money is going,” she said.

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Local News
6:00 am
Mon June 16, 2014

Lawmakers Tell Board That Reviews Charters To Change Its Mindset

At this charter advisory board's first meeting last year, they discuss criteria to use to review charter applications.
Credit Lisa Miller / WFAE

Groups that want to open charter schools in North Carolina are reviewed by a board largely consisting of people who operate charters. That board was put in place to weed out the bad applications from the good. But it has been taking some heat lately. Some lawmakers think it may be doing too zealous a job partly because it only recommended a few charters this year. 

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Local News
4:01 pm
Tue May 13, 2014

One Rejected Charter Applicant Granted Second Chance

One group whose application to open a charter school in Eastern North Carolina was initially rejected will get a second shot. The state’s charter school advisory council decided Ignite Innovation should advance to the interview round with its proposal for a school in Pitt County in eastern North Carolina.  The group was the only one of 29 previously rejected applicants that the advisory council agreed to give a second chance.   The state board of education last month told the council they needed to give groups a chance to clarify their applications.

Charlotte Observer
11:37 am
Thu April 24, 2014

State Official: Disclose Charter Salaries Or Face Penalty

North Carolina’s top charter official warned schools Thursday that they could lose their charters, which authorize them to get public money, if they refuse to comply with public records requests for salaries.

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