Monday, December 16, 2013

Oasis Charter School in Salinas doing well

As you can probably imagine, my good friend Scuttlebutt sometimes likes to branch out and bring me news from beyond the Monterey Peninsula.

Always alert, Scuttlebutt heard Oasis Charter School in Salinas was in danger of closing.

So I made the required and responsible calls. And turns out, news of the charter's demise have been greatly exaggerated.

Oasis Principal Juanita Perea told me the school's doing great. The $2 million a year school's is financially healthy, they're offering music, art, computers, Spanish, and drama. The board just met to draft their strategic plan and to gear up to request a renewal for their five-year charter permit -- which they'll do in 2015.

"We're enhancing our programs, we're bringing AVID training summer so everyone's trained. We just bought musical instruments. We would not be doing that if we were considering shutting down."

The charter's located at a shopping center in Salinas where the school has a 15 year lease -- with 10 more years to go, so space is not an issue.

Perea was wondering where this news could be coming from, and the only idea that occurred to her was that the school has not yet received a federal grant she's expecting to help cover rent. Funny though, the feds gave Oasis their allotment for the school year 13-14 , but have not yet sent the money for the 12-13 school year. That's the feds for you.

In the meantime, Perea had to dip into the school's reserves to cover the rent. 

I wish the federal governmen would pay us what they owe us," she said.

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