Thursday, December 19, 2013

More on the Oasis Charter saga

Well, it turns out I did not have the complete story about the Oasis Charter when I published it's not in danger of closing.

As it usually happens, there's a lot more going on.

As part of their planning process, Principal Juanita Perea is proposing a couple of changes. Either to try to give the charter an emphasis on Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (the now so fashionable STEM) or leave the school as is. For the charter to go STEM, it would need a lab but there's not enough room in the building, so the school would have to give up its 7th and 8th grade to make room for the lab. And that's what has parents up in arms.

Perea told me over the phone that including the 7th and 8th grades in the STEM conversion would require a lot of money and a bigger building, a possibility that does not seem feasible at this time.

But the school could remain status quo, she said.

Parents are very upset because they have not been given adequate information, they say. They also say the information has been changing, which makes it unreliable.

Some also don't like what they describe as Perea's disrespectful attitude towards them. She shuns off their suggestions without even exploring them, Horace Ingraham told me. 

Ingraham is the father of a 7th grader, a girl who has thrived at Oasis, and he's very concerned he won't find a similar school for his daughter if the school decides to end its 8th grade.

A preliminary decision is expected to be made at the charter's board meeting scheduled for Jan. 22.

Or not. Stay tuned.

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