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Two charter schools — including one for the performing arts — rejected in Lake Elsinore

By in Press Enterprise on February 9, 2018

By David Downey

Pitches for two charter schools that wanted to open in Lake Elsinore have been rejected.

But proponents of one of the institutions — a school that would specialize in the performing arts — intend to fight the Lake Elsinore school board’s Thursday night, Feb. 8, decision.

Tanya Lee-Taylor, founder of Julia Lee Performing Arts Academy, said in an email Friday, Feb. 9, that she will appeal the denial to the Riverside County Board of Education.

“We’re not giving up,” Lee-Taylor said. “We have a solid plan and the right people committed to the right positions to make this school a success.”

And, she said, there is a need for the school in the Lake Elsinore Unified School District.

School district spokesman Mark Dennis said proponents of the other charter withdrew their petition earlier in the week, after learning that district officials recommended the board deny the petitions. The withdrawal came in an email from Alicia Berridge to the district on behalf of proposed Building Tomorrows Leaders Charter Academy.

The group may consider submitting another proposal later, wrote Berridge, who is executive director of Rising Stars Business Academy, a charter school in Moreno Valley.

The school board voted 5-0 to pass resolutions denying both schools, Dennis said.

The board concluded, among other things, that the plans presented “unsound” educational programs that were unlikely to succeed.

Charter schools have soared in popularity throughout the state and in the Inland area in recent years. They result from a 1992 law that opened the way for the schools, to improve learning and foster creative teaching. According to the California Charter Schools Association, there are 1,230 such schools across the state.

Parents who send their children to charter schools often are seeking smaller classes and campuses, innovative teaching, and specialized programs in art, music or science. They find the […]    

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