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Briarcliff Charter School to Go Before State Board Wednesday

The Globe Academy could receive final approval from the state board of education.

Parents and students in our community might have a new charter school option to choose from if the state board of education gives its approval Wednesday. The Globe Academy will go before the board for final approval in downtown Atlanta in the afternoon. 

From a statement the school sent:

ATLANTA – Families in DeKalb County may soon have another choice for their children’s education that will have them saying “merci,” “xièxiè” and “gracias!” The GLOBE Academy will present information about its proposed dual-language charter elementary school (with tracks in English-French, English-Mandarin and English-Spanish) for final approval tomorrow to the State Board of Education. Community members are urged to attend to show their support.

The Charter Committee Meeting will be held on Wednesday, Jan. 16, at 2:30 p.m. in the State Board Room on the 20th floor of the Twin Towers East building at 205 Jesse Hill Jr. Drive, SE, Atlanta, GA 30334.

Pending approval in February, the school will open August 2013 at the former Heritage Center (2225 Heritage Drive in Northeast Atlanta). The school will initially serve students in kindergarten to third grade, with a grade being added each year through eighth grade. Charter schools are public schools so there will be no cost to attend, and any family residing in the DeKalb County School District attendance zone will be eligible to enroll their children.

Class size will be limited to 22 students. However, because students will be supported by 2 teachers in every classroom—including a native speaker of the targeted second language—the student/teacher ratio will be 11:1.

Children at the GLOBE Academy will encounter core academic content in both English and a second world language (French, Mandarin or Spanish). Learning a second language is proven to enhance understanding of one’s primary language and creates lifelong academic, social, cultural and intellectual benefits.

Instruction at The GLOBE Academy is based on children’s natural inclination for inquiry and discovery. Students will engage in workshop-based learning for reading/language arts and math, as well as a project-based learning for social studies and science. Children will also participate in physical education, music, art and other enrichment classes throughout each week.

The GLOBE Academy expects to open with approximately 350 to 400 students in its first year and will grow to approximately 1100 students in six years. For the 2013-2014 academic year, this includes 5 kindergarten classes, 5 first grade classes, 4 second grade classes and 4 third grade classes.

To learn more and sign up to receive updates, including enrollment
information as it becomes available, please visit:
www.theglobeacademy.org

Kathleen Sherwood January 16, 2013 at 01:04 PM
Fantastic news for the community. I hope all goes well with the accreditation process. Kathleen Sherwood
Tom Doolittle January 16, 2013 at 08:07 PM
This is not clear whether this went in front of the new charter commission; (or) a holdover from the "old" commission; (or) was originally rejected by Dekalb or simply went straight to the state DOE board, under the law that has existed since the 1990's. The information is germane to many of the terms of the debate over the recent referendum. Examples: (1)The new law requires that a "community" be defined for a school, whether a local area, county or state. (2)Did the referendum stimulate the decision, bearing on some concerns over new charter schools' acceleration into affluent areas vs the contention that they would be opened and used more in failing low income communities?
Evan January 16, 2013 at 08:34 PM
This was in process before the recent voting on the charter commission. It takes years for a charter to even get to this step of the process, not weeks.
Tom Doolittle January 17, 2013 at 01:36 AM
I see the website and FAQs--good info--it is indeed a DeKalb School. I'd still like to know if the school originally applied with DCSS. Also, why was DeKalb County chosen to operate the school and whether locations in DeKalb were looked at other than Heritage and the I-85/Briarcliff/Lavista corridor.
Tom Doolittle January 17, 2013 at 02:05 AM
The website says the school will take applications by March, then hold a lottery if needed. What's the PR plan that will ensure fairness in penetration to all prospective families in three months? Seems like if enough notice was given, the place would be overrun with applicants--at least anyone with a car and/or walking distance. (I did see the FAQ on transport). Who wouldn't prefer to have their kids in an 11:1 teacher to kid ratio that come from families that obviously care enough to take the extra step to look at alternatives to their neighborhood school--and families that have to be committed to volunteerism?...and if you live near Lakeside High, easy to get to...and immerse in dual languages. The only detriment that I can think of is they might want to go to school with neighbor kids and near their home. But wait a minute, many families have already shown they don't have that priority. Nope--the only reason I can think that this school won't have thousands of applicants is that the word didn't get out...and where's the fairness? Then alternatively, what's the efficacy of taxpayers paying solely for the OPPORTUNITY-BY-LOTTERY to get into a public school that they paid for?
The GLOBE Academy January 19, 2013 at 02:57 PM
The GLOBE Academy was first approved by The DeKalb County School District and then went before the State Board of Education for final approval. Thank you for your questions! The GLOBE Academy
Tom Doolittle January 22, 2013 at 01:09 AM
As a DeKalb County school with open enrollment, are there any procedures in place to determine whether the whole county is being adequately represented--or conversely that the school become a de-facto Emory/Briarcliff/Lavista Corridor school?
Concerned Dekalb Parent March 16, 2013 at 02:34 PM
I totally agree with your comment. I am a resident of South Dekalb county (Stone Mountain) and it is pretty obvious that there were no attempts to get the word out about this school to parents on this side of town. I just happened to come across the new school's website on the Dekalb County website this week as I was checking the status of my child's lottery standings for HB 251. Luckily he was accepted to attend Midvale. However, I have been interested in him learning a second language (Mandarin) for a very long time. I am very disappointed that I was not given the opportunity to find out about the Globe Academy until after the public lottery. And with the tens of thousands of students in Dekalb county, to know that only 123 applications were submitted for first grade is disturbing and heartbreaking. There definitely would have been more applications if parents in the district were aware. Even the Museum School had more applications and they have a specific school zone that gets first priority. And...why was the website only recently made visible on the Dekalb website. I check that site very often and it was definitely not there during the month of February. As an educator, I want the best possible education for my child just like everyone else. I want other options besides what has become the norm in public education. Providing ALL kids with a choice should be the goal of any charter school that will operate from a portion of my tax dollars.

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